by Lorna Douglas
I can remember having a conversation many years ago with a minister, the Rev. fred Booth, regarding our knowledge of God. I had thought that maybe one day it would be possible for humans to be able to scientifically prove everything there is to know and understand about God and the universe. In his wisdom he kindly disagreed with me saying: "there will always be mystery". These words have stayed with me, floating about in my subconscious and every so often at life's prompting they surface into my conscious world as testament to the reality of a lived life. It was not arrogance that made me believe that God could be proven, just youthful optimism and human hopefulness wanting to reach out and grasp surety. Today I am still the optimist and ever hopeful, but appreciate the difference between what can be known and the mystery of the unknown. I now conceive God as 'Being' - a concept beyond our knowledge; one that science cannot prove or wholly comprehend.
We may glimpse and understand certain aspects of this 'Being', but never fully see or know it in its entirety. In the theme 'Expressions of Mysticism' we are given insights into the mystical heritage of various faith traditions. They show us that Divine Love is the greatest mystery of all. It is a Love that unites us, that we may be strong together in the face of adversity. A Love that nurtures a culture of responsibility and service to others, illustrated by Bhai Sahib Bhai Mohinder Singh as he writes of the recent riots in Birmingham. It is a Love that conquers fear of persecution as witnessed in the theme of 'Religious freedom'. A Love that moved Harjit Singh Sagoo to commit to the creation of a truly inter-religious poem to promote peace for humanity. And it is a Love that has accompanied Elspeth Gibb along the path to inner peace.