Identity/Believing in something…
I wanted to write on my commute this morning and I thought a good way to seek inspiration is from my album of trusty quotes or sayings I save on my phone, things I relate to.
So I’m going to go controversially for the one in the pic.
I say controversially because perhaps many (including myself at times) don’t want to talk about this kind of thing – religion/beliefs.
That’s cool. I’m not here to preach. I have no ‘religion’ to do so. I’m a Jewish girl, but I see what other people would call my ‘religion’ more of my cultural heritage. Both parents are Jewish and I feel it strongly in my family, but more because of their natural ability to perform as a community more than anything else. In banter world: our love of food, family, a shared sense of humour and music (like many other cultures) tells me I’m Jewish. Most importantly, and in all seriousness, our families acknowledgement of historical struggle and our survival in the world also gels us thickly together.
As a kid in North London, many of us were Jewish. Where I grew up in Bournemouth, my school mocked it. Like they misuse the word, ‘gay’. So I kept this part of me hidden as I didn’t want to put myself in the position of having to explain who I was. I felt a bit cowardly, not being proud – like ‘God’ was tutting down on me…keep in mind, I’m not religious, it’s just part of my identity.
Back in London, however, I’m much more at home (literally) with a bigger sense of belonging, in a diverse city, and it feels freer to be who I am. Sadly, that’s not the case for many a race (not the time to rhyme, Abs. Simply, not the time). 🙈 I actually got myself caught up in a race debate on my latest binge drinking evening I spoke fondly of yesterday…fighting the corner for accepting as White people what ‘White’ privilidge actually means and how it’s different from things like sexism. My uni taught me SO much about race, marginalisation and ‘whiteness’, a term many in my circle (especially prior) may not be familiar with. A term that makes White’s uncomfortable at times and they’re not okay with being uncomfortable. As 1 half of an interracial relationship and just ‘me doing me,’ I make it my business to understand and persevere with these conversations. To challenge mindsets and open eyes that are so glued shut by fear of hearing the word ‘racist’ or being discriminatory they can’t even engage.
In relation to this quote though, I do actually believe in God. Be God a/the universe, a higher ‘power’ (sunflower believed in a higher power) a figure, in the sky, a soul, a human or an animal – use what word you like – I’m spiritual. And proud. Despite a little insecurity if those who approach it with cynic try and question me.
As a kid, one of my most lovely memories was that every night before I slept (I had a huge imaginary world by the way, lived in it for years, still go into one occasionally, I’m just big on imagination, so even if it’s imaginary, it won’t stop my believing) I used to envisage “God” and “The People”. To make it easier to understand, God was the Judge and The People were The Jury. Like in a courtroom. I used to go to God for an answer and the Jury would play either my ID (the kid in me) or the super ego (sorry for the psych terms – super ego= the adult in me) and come to a decision that ‘God’ would decide whether would be final or not. Perhaps it was based on values or morals, who knows. Some people would say it was my concious. Whatever it was, it was part of who I was.
These days I’m a bit different. I actually do pray most evenings (no, not on my hands and knees) but I send a little ‘prayer’ to the universe, usually just for gratitude for the day and the people in my life. It grounds me. I used to always pray for protection for me and my loved ones. That’s still in there most the time too. I pray ‘in my head’ not aloud. It’s my relationship with ‘God,’ no one else’s. I don’t conform to any religious norms or beliefs, this is my own stuff. My own being. I believe in a universe. I trust it; even when things are tough – might not be able to see it at the time but, mostly I’ll remember when I’m more ‘well’.
There’s other quotes that sum up similarly how I feel like this one, but this was the first I came across.
I’m not asking for anyone to agree with me when I blog. I’m just being me and expressing myself. Not asking for validation or approval. I believe what I believe, and I love that part of me.
Peace and love, Abs X 💚