I wrote the following spiritual biography as part of the Path of Discovery Class taught at the Centre for Spiritual Living in Edmonton.
My earliest concept of God comes from some of my earliest memories of being alive. Just knowing that I am here, I am alive, being conscious about being a living, breathing being. My parents taught me about God as a loving creator and that the world was safe, and I felt that and knew that as a young child. I trusted that God was there, that I was special and that he loved me. I knew that I was perfect when I was a young child.
I think that knowing this and feeling this about myself and my world was synonymous with knowing and experiencing God’s love. I knew I was supported. I knew I was safe. I knew I was who I was meant to be.
I feel a little sadness now to look back and see how this changed for me, to become frightened and feel a separateness from God. To feel that God didn’t like me and that he would punish me for being who I am. In the church tradition I grew up in, the focus was on performance, on following the rules and behaving, on our inadequacy and failure as human beings. I bought into these messages and made them the foundation of my thinking and living.
The darkest moment in my life occurred when I left seminary in 1998. I had been a super Christian up to that point and I just couldn’t do it anymore. I couldn’t measure up. I couldn’t be who they wanted me to be. I knew there was more to God and to life than that.
I started to see change when I let go of my old beliefs and opened up to new ones. I could make room in my view of God for homosexuality and evolution. I started learning about Buddhism and mediation. I learned from Carl Jung about a more mythical and mystical way of seeing the world. I learned so much from Ram Dass about letting go, about miracles, about the spiritual Journey, and about finding my own path.
Michelle has played a big role here, because our paths and awakenings have been on similar tracks.
I currently see God as Creator, but also as the playful Father with a twinkle in his eye. He doesn’t take himself or this life too seriously, so neither do I. I’m starting to see Consciousness as the only reality and to see this physical world as merely a simulation or a game in which I am the only player and everything else and everyone else is in on the game, to support me and help me to awaken to the true nature of myself and the Game.
My purpose is to remember who I am, to forget all the false truths about how I think the world is. In doing so, I can release my fears and see just how deep the love and support of the Universe is. I am meant to experience the Fullness of Joy.
Darren Paul Griffith
Edmonton, September 2007