Sheltered from the last of the bleak winter that folds around the old, wood built cabin that passes for their church, these cannabis evangelicals are in surprisingly good humor. Each Tuesday they meet and discuss their faith. Sometimes traveling miles so they can sit and contemplate life from within the warm embrace of their church. Recently the congregation has grown, they are now looking for a larger chapel to help them spread the word. Due to the persecution they get from non believers, the church has remained a closely guarded secret.
The familiar, loving experience that is a visit to their weekly service, stands in stark contrast to the prohibition horror stories each member has had to endure. They have all, quite literally suffered for their faith. Myself and about 30 other people take our seats when the pastor moves to the raised oak pulpit. Lily has been the head of this group for more than 25 years. She is a gentle, dignified looking woman in her middle age. As she beams down on us all, you can feel the room tuning into her frequency.
“Welcome everyone, I hope we don’t have any members left stranded out there in the blizzard”. Lily went on to tell us about the role she sees for the church, as well as sharing wisdom and humor. The church is to be an example of compassion and evolution she said. We are here to share experiences, to embrace ourselves and the wider community. She reminded us that this is our one and only known chance to live and celebrate the here and now. All of creation is a sacred gift for us to enjoy. We must rediscover sharing and cooperation if we are going to build the perfect society which allows both us and the natural world to thrive.
We begin with ourselves. Finding out who we really are is a sacrament. Trying to live by the standards that Mother Nature has given us is a fundamental goal. In short, trying to be the best version of ourselves. Once we understand who we are and what direction we would most prefer our lives to take, we get on with it. Make it happen and help those around you that want the same thing. It is your religious duty to be in a constant state of learning. We are here to evolve. You have to judge your actions based on the entire consequences of those actions. We are part of the problem until we become conscious enough to do our part to promote a better society.
She spoke at length about our duty to be authentic. Working together is more fun. Sitting in a grey, work cubical and punching things into a computer is not the full expression of humanity. It is a perversion. We were not meant to be seven billion strangers on the planet. We are family, Asian cousins, Indian uncles and European aunts. At our root, we are all from the same species, sharing the same bit of rock hurtling through infinite space and time. The non believers that oppress us believe that they are outside of nature and are masters of it. This is the same situation as when a small child throws a temper tantrum at its mother because she will not let the child play in the busy street. We are from nature, we are nature and it is time to become a more natural society. We have amazing technology and intelligence, so lets start channeling that smarts into practical things that can save the planet. Modern society is sick. Consumerism has not turned out to be anything other than a business scam to pollute the planet while benefiting only a handful of sociopaths.
The vision Lily has for society is beautiful. I don’t know if it was the ideals or the wicked white widow that made me tune into the church. All I know is that I will be attending next Tuesdays gathering. As we become adults there is a certain amount of disappointment that comes with growing up. Things keep changing. Those golden yesterdays will fade whether we like it or not and in the end, the only thing we really ever have is the present moment. Look around you, this is it. The perspective we choose to view this moment with however, is up to us. Looking up at Lily I choose to see the world as a smile. I don’t know how practical this religion is, but I sure hope it catches on.