I signed up to do 10Q this year. It is a sort of introspection and self-examination exercise that is followed up on one year hence so that one can better peer into their past self. I’ll let them explain:
10 Days. 10 Questions.
Answer one question per day in your own secret online 10Q space. Make your answers serious. Silly. Salacious. However you like. It’s your 10Q. When you’re finished, hit the magic button and your answers get sent to the secure online 10Q vault for safekeeping. One year later, the vault will open and your answers will land back in your email inbox for private reflection. Want to keep them secret? Perfect. Want to share them, either anonymously or with attribution, with the wider 10Q community? You can do that too.
Next year the whole process begins again. And the year after that, and the year after that. Do you 10Q? You should.
I was quite busy this weekend and they piled up on me but I thought I would share a brief version of my answer to one of the questions. Here is the question for day 5:
Have you had any particularly spiritual experiences this past year? How has this experience affected you? “Spiritual” can be broadly defined to include secular spiritual experiences: artistic, cultural, and so forth.
Now I am an atheist agnostic. There was a time when I begrudged others their faith, but that time has passed and I have no issues with anyone’s faith so long as it is their own and they harm no one else in its practice. Basically, no fundies. That said, I’ve felt in better spiritual communion with some important people in my life in the past year and I thought I would share my answer to this question.
My girlfriend is a religious person but I have self-identified as an atheist agnostic since I was 18. Neither of us thought we’d date someone like the other and yet two years in we live together and have begun to plan for the future.
For a long time, religion has either been a taboo topic (with my family) or a point of disagreement. Neither of these was particularly welcome. Yet talking to my gf and her mother has been huge in rehabilitating my view of religious people if not organized religion in general.
In a talk with gf’s mom, I found that we could both speak very openly not only about religion and spirituality but also about philosophical differences in general. Through that discussion, we found that to a point we believe much the same about god (little ‘g’) though we come from different directions. It boils down to this. She believes in god and believe the old adage that “God is love,” a platitude I never much cared for myself. Except that, to an extent, I can believe in /god/ myself. For me, love is God and God in created between people to towards a great purpose and faith in humanity. It matters not at all that we come at this from different angles, only that it works for how we engage with others, kindly and towards understanding.
Interestingly, this led a month later to a similar reservation with my gf wherein we found that we have much the same conception of life after death, once again reached through vastly different philosophical mazes. It has been wonderful to find such communion with my SO and her mother through these talks. The devil, as they say, is in the details, but god (or any number of other words or ideas you might ascribe to this phenomenon) is found in generalities and in one another.
Sadly I’ve had no such revelations with my own family, but even so it has been nice to connect with adoptive family (as well as and including one of my oldest friends, TheJackoSpade) is such a way.
I’m looking forward to reading my 2014 answers in the Fall of ‘15. I may even share an answer or two at that time, along with updates.