Huston Smith On Why Spirituality Without Religion Isn’t Enough
Undoubtedly, the transcendent experience — whatever its source — is the most important experience that a human being can have, because it opens up the certainty that the other world is more real than our quotidian world, in the same way that sunlight is more fundamental than the shadows it casts.
Over the years, says O’Hara, “this has emerged as his great teaching for me. . . . He was broken. I am broken. And when we can see that we are all chipped and broken, we begin to see that we are truly perfect and complete, just as we are.”
It is the summer of my fiftieth year, and I have just returned from a long journey to pay my last respects to my mother’s sister Charlotte. Everyone called her Chad, pronounced “Shod.” Her husband of forty years, my Uncle Glenn, had preceded her in death by less than six weeks.
When I first spot Glen on the Monashee Rail Trail, I almost wave to him. Then I stop myself, think better of it, and decide to pass him by. It’s OK. After all, a whole year has passed since I last saw Glen, and I am a new person: mother, wife, nonsmoker; my hair cut to shoulder length, my face free of makeup. It is all right to walk right past Glen.
They were not far from Linda’s house, where Jenny had been invited for spaghetti and meatballs: her favorite, and Mr. Serrano’s specialty. All the way from school, Linda had been walking on the inside and Jenny on the outside; then, for some reason — Jenny cannot remember why — they changed places, and not thirty seconds later a car came speeding up behind them, hit Linda, and killed her.