I used to think that faith in a Great Beyond - some other, bigger space - a space that transcended time and, well, space - was a comforting and desirable idea to hold on to. Somehow, I felt it in my bones. I had faith. Blessed was I who believed but did not see. I would live forever ... and ever ... and ever ...

Then, I realized that my faith was killing my wonder. I mean, against the backdrop of eternity - what was this existence worth? A square of toilet paper serves a greater purpose for longer on the scale of a lifetime than a lifetime does within the scale of eternity. Faith turned life into one infinitessimally insignificant "So the fuck what."

Focusing on an afterlife - of pure joy or pure torture - either way - makes this life a sham. Here we are - nothing but a tiny ripple in an eternity of tsunami waves. Wow. What a buzzkill!

Some say you can't find purpose without finding God. I say you can't find it without losing god. After all, if we are just the craft projects of some uber-artisan - we might have purpose - like a hammer has purpose. We create nothing. We are simply tools.

And meanwhile - this god is an atheist - with no need for faith or a creator or anything at all - except, perhaps, the constant obedience and worship of all creatures small and smaller.

I'm much happier now that I know - deep down - that I don't know. Death is what makes my life precious to me. The inevitable march toward total oblivion is why I get up in the morning - because I can.

Face it - even if there is an afterlife - you won't be you. Your body, brain, desires, flaws, sensations, emotions, thoughts, needs, aversions, fears, aspirations, visions, nightmares - everything that makes you ... you - will be gone. No sex, no eating, no cracking your knuckles, no taking a satisfying dump, no paying bills, no earning money, no wanting to kill your boss, no kissing, no hugging, no singing, no dancing. Forever.

And ever ... and ever.... and ever...

We live here. That takes no faith. But it does take courage and wonder and curiosity and tenacity and hard, sweaty, satisfying labor. It takes enjoying a grape for the brief explosion of flavor on your tongue.

That is what spirituality is to me. Finding love in a mad, confusing, chaotic and far too brief spasm of breathing and twitching life on Earth. Vive la vie, baby! Vive la vie!

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