Identification seems to be instilled from a young age. At the time of receiving a given name and understanding that we are to be addressed as that name moving forward, we identify ourselves with a title.
It was a another long hot week here in the Ohio Valley. Rains late within the week brought cooler temperatures and people out of their air-conditioned places yesterday evening. I took advantage of the mild weather and rode my mountain bike around the inner city before heading home. There is a large park with ball fields and a golf course adjacent to the park. I made my way past a field where a group was playing some sort of sport that I didn’t recognize, but I did recognize that the group was of some type of Hispanic or Mexican ethnicity. On the outskirts of the field where the players had parked, I noticed a little boy, probably three years of age, climbing all over the top of a small sedan while two men stood nearby and spoke to each other. I passed and caught the little boy’s attention as a bright smile lit up his face. He quickly waved at me, and I waved back with a smile.
The intention originally for this writing was to utilize the ‘little boy’ story within a piece I began last night after arriving home. The writing was going to be about how we as adults must receive the Kingdom of God like children (Luke 18) and how the smile: a reflection of subtly polluted innocence; the not yet conditioned ways in which he will be taught to identify himself with the world that we individually already know as adults (our conceptualizations), sheds light on the Kingdom within. The writing was going to be an attempt of interpretation through a personal understanding of the Kingdom of God within us, and not a place we will go after physical death. It was going to be about how we must die to the conditioned mind in order to become like the child.
Far too many professing Christians, after reading the completed writing, would probably say I was wrong anyway. So the angle with the writing took a turn this morning.
I began to realize that the boy may or may not comprehend a religious identification. He may or may not know that he is a beautiful creation that I see who really needs no identification. He’s just a Being with a life inside. A being whose eyes told me that he emanates love, like I believe Jesus was teaching us to become again in order to inherit that inner Kingdom of joy and peace.
I used to think that I had to do and be a “Christian” in order to become a different kind of being. “Born again” now seems to me like a realization; an awareness of thoughts around my conditioning. Even religions have their labels. I was personally labeled, identified, and later–progressively–categorized and polluted with the junk of this world. Seeing the love in the eyes of the joyous boy yesterday evening made me realize just how much of the Kingdom of God (love) is within us all, now. It is only through the conditioning I have experienced that has led me to the place that is pale in comparison to what I saw within that little boy.