I wonder what it is that turns the world round,
That hides the far side of the Moon from the Earth,
That sees with my eyes but cannot be seen.
Why is it that I have a perspective?
How is it that I exist as an individual,
As a piece of space wrapped up in time?
When did this capsule
Of skin, bones, and blood arise
If its growth itself is what pulled time from the void?
Where is the blue of the sky
Without me here to paint it?

However I wound up here,
Sense does no justice to the place.
I cannot see
That which begs to be seen.
What can be sensed,
What can be stood under,
What can be named…
None of this is what I wonder.
I wonder what it is that is.
Who is being human?

Whether I am chained,
Or I can fly free.
Whether the stars pull my strings,
Or the stage is mine to sing.
What I really wonder
What’s behind the scenes?
The seen is self-evident.
It is the seer that mystifies.
My eyes can reach to the end of space,
But still I am not satisfied.
Even if I could come to terms with time
(Beyond the categories
Of Past, Present, and Future),
What remains hidden:
The eternal,
The boundless,
The before beginning
And after ending;
That is what I chase.

And in so doing,

There is no gap,
No room for contradiction.
The known and the unknown
Have the same home.
It is me,
Each of me,
That binds the inside and the out.
It is me,
All of me,
That lights time
And blows it out.

The Spiritual Animal

Some have suggested that the human being can (and therefore ought to) live without God. I reject this claim. I propose that the human being is the spiritual animal, the organism that knows that it is. God is the “thatness” of existence, that transcendent quality of all that is but whose name cannot be spoken. This “knowing that it is” should be sharply distinguished from a “knowing what it is,” which is an entirely different proposition. Certain rationalists have suggested that the human being can know what it is, and that this knowledge makes religion obsolete. But the rationalist has wrongly identified the meaning of spirituality by rationalizing its role in human life. Spirituality does not direct humanity’s attention to “what” existence is, but rather to the fact “that” it is. Rationality can offer no explanation for the “thatness” of existence. Instead, it directs the human being’s attention to the names it has devised for the processes it has identified in the world of sensory experience. Rationality provides the human with an array of “whats,” of descriptions and conceptualizations of an empirically evident nature. But the human being is not content with linguistic stand-ins, with whatness. The human being demands to know why, to understand the very fact of existence itself: “that” which cannot be named but only presupposed, directly experienced before words or thoughts occur. The rationalist may labor for centuries, but no answer to the fact of existence can be given (because existence asks no question!). Existence is self-evident, which is why it is completely impossible to “believe” in God. If you need to believe in God, you have forgotten the very basis of your experience in the world. You have neglected the “thatness” of reality, the unfathomable here and nowness of your existence that surely requires no belief at all. God is not a “what,” God simply is. God is being. Spirituality concerns a human being’s awareness of being, of existence itself. Not of “what” it is, but “that” it is.