I grew up with a dislike (much stronger actually) of Southern California. There is no rationale or emotional experiences on which I base this view. Rather it is a view I have long held onto for reasons I don’t even know exist. Having a home and a family in Southern California has changed everything. Slowly the perceptions which long ago became traditions are changing.
I thought smog dominated every day of the year. I even ridiculed the “marine fog” as a simple clich? to mask a different kind of smog. Yet the reality of the real forced me to reexamine my traditions. Take a small commuter flight up into the marine fog and you will discover, amazingly, that it is just marine fog. Wake up this morning and walk out into the front yard and you will see for miles and miles and miles. The mountains thirty miles away are crisp and clear! The lights twinkle at night.
There was tradition for how soldiers treated the clothes of the crucified. “When they crucified him, the Roman soldiers took his clothes and divided them up four ways, to each soldier a fourth. But his robe was seamless, a single piece of weaving, so they said to each other, ‘Let's not tear it up. Let's throw dice to see who gets it.’” (John 19.23, 24)
There is a link between the traditions beginning with our perceptions. It is easy to perceive “who” we are, and “what” we do. These perceptions often are reinforced so they become personal traditions. What if we are wrong? What if our perceptions are founded on something off frame?
My God lays out some blunt facts. Divinity says I am a child of God. Divinity bluntly states I have, am, and will make mistakes, some terrible, but this doesn’t change my relationship with the Divine. Divinity goes on to talk of hope, love, and mercy – along with the role you and I can play in the realization of these values and principles. Great traditions we can make real beginning with our perceptions.
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