As I drive with my friends to Kansas City for our annual trip to Worlds Of Fun (this time, during fall break), having sarcastic arguments with underlying themes about what it means to exist (which is how I interpret them), I ponder the reason for our existence, sitting in this van, talking and laughing with one another. What are we doing here, and, of all the billions of causes for our existence here and now, there was one first cause.
It still scares me, like it did when I was a little girl, when I think about something causing these causes and how this something never had a cause. This something is God. It’s like I’m looking down a restricted line through a very narrow point of view. I look out at the trees that point up to the sky which holds the stars which extend out into the universe, however vast and large, and at the end or the beginning (or both) or encasing the entire unimaginable vast area of the universe is this strangely frightening causer, God.
I look at my friends, and first, I wonder if they think the same thing. We’re contingent beings, dependent on another. Last night, I spend time with the same friends. We were sad together because we missed our friends who have already graduated and/or have already started student teaching, taking on internships, and finding jobs. At this point in time, we are dependent on each other for fun and happiness, confidentiality, and a sense of belonging. If we were necessary beings, why would we feel this way, not as Christians, but as mere human beings?
There is a pattern, not just among Christian communities but also at the lunch table in a high school cafeteria, in the workplace, in college. We look for those in which we can see something of ourselves, so we’re not entirely dependent on our beliefs (and doubts) about existence from an ultimate creator, or an ultimate creation (the big bang theory) that eventually led to our short so-called life on earth. I even venture into the city once in a while and observe groups of friends heading to the bar, school children playing together on the playground, elderly couples walking into bingo night together. Humans are dependent on one another. This brings back a point I made in earlier writings: “How do you define yourself without comparison to others?”
I will argue that it does not matter if you’re Christian…atheist, agnostic; there is an undeniable value put upon other beings of similar substance. If you’re a “people-person,” sure it’s obvious, but even if one is a serial killer, there is some kind of significance from the human being that makes he or she worthy or unworthy of living. In other words, humans have an effect on other humans, good or bad, in the moral sense. Therefore, the value put upon existence is something of a higher power that exceeds human thought and rationality.
We just listened to a song on the radio by the Black Eyes Peas entitled, "Where Is The Love?" The final line of the song goes like this: "Father, father, father help us, we need some guidance from above." The song illustrates the need for something to look up to, to explain our existence, and to explain our existence for each other. It doesn't necessarily come from "above," but from the foundation of all causes: the first cause.