In the morning, when consciousness is struggling to begin facing the day, the habit of having a coffee kicks the neurons into gear. The mind stirs and is suddenly alive and aware that it is facing a new adventure. No death in sleep this time. One night though, but then again I wouldn’t know, would I?
The sun casts a golden glow in the east. No illusions as to thoughts of supernatural origins begetting this nuclear furnace for the most of history, for me. Pondering how the ancients considered the Earth as the centre of everything, with the Sun revolving around it, has me thanking my lucky stars for the scientific knowledge existent today.
Heading out for my early morning stroll in the chill winter air with a thick fog encompassing all before me, gladdens the feeling that I am entering the realm of nature in the raw. No need to fear mysterious and ghostly creatures suddenly appearing out of the mist or indeed, the “Devil” arriving to take my ‘soul’, or any other such nonsensical happening.
The excess moisture dripping from the gum leaves and branches reminds me of the interdependence and interplay of chemicals and structures of them, and how the immensity of time has moulded all things to be as they now are in my presence.
A disappearing rabbit, a Kangaroo in the distance, the first call of a Raven with the ensuing warble of awakening magpies heralds the new day. Life, as it has been in a multitude of shapes and sizes since time immemorial prepares to live once again, to feed, to become strong, all for the purpose of eventual reproduction. My mind can hardly appreciate the thousands upon thousands of times the circle of life, for each animal I pass, has taken place.
Reality of the harshness of nature is brought home with a pile of feathers strewn at the base of a Wattle. To live, some must die and a mockery of “god is love” passes through my thoughts. How many creatures were torn asunder last night? This is not creative love – this is sadism by an all-powerful monster. I move away from these thoughts before despondency of the foolishness of a god fearing humanity sets in.
The fog gives way to the rising heat of the Sun and in the distance the mosaic patterns known so well, re-establish themselves, with my amazement as new, as though it were the first sighting. How full of wonder it is to be alive.
Breakfast is accompanied by the radio telling of all the new horrors that have taken place locally and internationally. As each item is reported, the count for religious responsibility rises and I marvel why the connection is not mainstream. My heart is saddened for those thus suffering, and in opposition, my joy in having rejected superstition somewhat ameliorates the feelings of guilt that the religious should have but do not.
Today is Sunday, and whilst billions of other people will be mumbling to their god, I will be shopping for food. I contemplate for a moment what I would think, were I a god and what effect a few billion or so whining, whinging and crawling servants would have on me. They do not even know if I really exist, yet, that does not stop them. What a sad and frightened lot is my creation. Too brainwashed to think for themselves. Back to reality land and I am oh so happy that I am not one of them.
The shopping centre is a hive of activity. A collection of humanity busily pushing and rushing and mostly looking unhappy. The cupboard was bare and now the trolley is overfull. I do not thank a god for this harvest but I do consider the effect my living has on the planet. I buy with this in mind, looking for ingredients and packaging that have the least effect on precious earthly resources. It is very noticeable that not many of my fellow purchasers are similarly discerning and I ponder if the “god will provide” philosophy is at fault. To some extent, this would have to be correct.
The car takes me away from the crowded shops. The millions-of-years-aged petrol pollutes the atmosphere as I go, leaving me reinstating promises of being thrifty as possible with its use. There is some consolation, in that of the religious people I know, most are more concerned with the actual monetary cost of fuel and it is reinforced with me that such a philosophy is flawed at the basic level.
Passing the ample supply of churches, I notice that some are full and some are not. A profound happiness enters my consciousness at having escaped the cultural absurdities of worshipping a pretend god. My luck in this can only be described as beyond belief. To be born is winning the lottery, to live for an average span is another, but to be able to think any thought without guilt or compromise, is the lottery of all lotteries.
The rest of the day is amused with natural process, and away from the ever-present reminders of godly things, such thoughts are not even entertained. The pleasure of a quiet dinner with a couple of wines, of writing to a few friends via E-Mail, of another attempt at fixing a broken gate, of phoning a family member and just contemplating the joy of living, leaves the mind in a state of comfort and serenity.
The night has arrived, it is a few hours old, and the rain is softly pelting on the western windows. The television has transformed from the entertaining to the banal and it is time to retire for this day.
As I lay in bed before sleep envelopes my Universe, I contemplate today’s events. My very last thoughts, before I am unconscious once again, revolve around my incredible luck of arriving at a position of actually seeing life as life really is. The induced phantoms of a ubiquitously taught unreality lay slain, and exist no more.
I drift off into the land of Nod, and I am complete. Goodnight.
By David Nicholls