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It’s a beautiful autumn afternoon in Australia. The sky, piercing blue, framed by the green of the nearby trees, forms a canvas for streaking, thin white clouds.

I look up, mesmerised.

Lately, I am using the words ‘All That Is’ rather than the word ‘God’. As I write this, I realise the wisdom of the ancient Jewish people who felt the name ‘God’ was too awesome to use.

Later, when Jesus came along, he talked about his relationship with God as being intensely personal and loving. He said we could have that relationship too.

When you think about it, all that we know, be, and are, is a construct of our ‘mind’. So it makes sense that the infinite and the personal are intensely entwined. ‘All That Is’ impinges on my mind just as much as my intensely personal feelings, memories, words and actions.

It seems to me in this age where we are constantly being bombarded with ‘stuff’. This keeps us distracted and thereby thinking small.

We rarely look up outside of ourselves. This means most of us don’t take time to stop and ponder the bigger picture. We are locked in an economy rather than a community. Regarded as consumers rather than individuals. And are encouraged to look for entertainment, gambling and advertising to distract us.

We’ve lost sight of the bigger picture.

As the sun streamed down on me and I felt the cool breeze, for a moment in time I was lifted to a higher plane.

Up until this present time, that higher plane, and awareness of the awesomeness into which we were born, was expressed in many different ways. Nowadays, in the rational world we live in, we don’t have the words for that feeling. It’s the stuff of poets, artists and musicians and it leads us to a space many of us don’t know how to deal with.

We all rejoice when a baby is born, and we know it’s more than just a birth. We feel sad when loved ones die but we don’t have a higher plane to lift these feelings into.

Now, I’m not saying everyone in the past felt all this. What I am saying is: We in society had ways to express it. Often we went along with the words and we interpreted them in our own way but the space in our lives was there for this.

This Easter many people won’t know what to do with the space that is offered to us.

Yet the wind that blows on our face and calls to us.

I am learning more and more, and more, that at the very core of life, at the very heart of ‘All That Is’, there is a mystery. I tend to want to say a ‘question mark’ but that makes it too concrete.

This morning I stood near a railway line and watched as it snaked through the trees, into the distance. The further I looked, the more hazy that railway line became until it vanished into the great expansive horizon. I couldn’t help thinking life was that. A train slowly becoming visible, approaching from the horizon, was like the child being born. And the train moving away into the horizon, was like life as it ends. It’s not really a question mark but a sense of wonder.

The more I realise I as a human being am imponderable, the more I realize life itself is like that too.

Jesus talks about the Kingdom of God. The Buddha talks about the Nirvana in the Now. Mohammed saw social order as coming from God. All these civilizations have created societies that in this day and age are beginning to blend naturally sometimes with much agitation.

In 2021 we are all moving forward. So many of us have rejected much of our religious and spiritual traditions. It’s left us searching for more, yet we don’t know where to look.

The one human thing that we know that pushes us into a new paradigm is loving compassion. Caring and loving for one another, lifts us out of ourselves into another realm.

It’s my feeling that it is this realm that we are lifted into when we look up to the sky, feel the sun upon us and the wind on our cheeks. The realm that fills us with a magical sense of awe.

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  1. Wayne 31 March 2021 at 14:37 - Reply

    I guess Dear Rev Bill you have a longing to go see your friend The Dalai Lama & your childrens charity in Bangkok.Very difficult with the restrictions in place.Praying not more super spreaders Covid over Easter

  2. Jill Coggan 31 March 2021 at 14:49 - Reply

    Many thanks, Bill! This is just so beautiful and I’ll be reading it again and again! God Bless!

  3. Rob 31 March 2021 at 15:02 - Reply

    Love your writing Bill. Thank you. I’m sharing this with my team – I know they’ll love it too. Rob

  4. Anne watson 31 March 2021 at 15:30 - Reply

    Many thanks for your interesting and thoughtful reflections.
    May you have a very blessed Easter and may ‘all that is’ keep you safe and give you strength to continue the wonderful work you all do.

    Shalom, Anne

  5. Pam Tremlett 31 March 2021 at 15:46 - Reply

    I pray you have Beautiful blessed Easter love Di and Pam

  6. Dominique George 31 March 2021 at 16:12 - Reply

    As always with all your blogs Rev. Bill your wise words have the ability to inspire me and transport me to a better place.
    Thank you for sharing.

    Dominique George

  7. Sonja 31 March 2021 at 16:19 - Reply

    Thanks Bill, very inspirational, mother nature is always inspiring and strives to keep order in the world.

  8. Vera McLean 31 March 2021 at 16:39 - Reply

    True we can all connect to the Universal Spirit of Love, Truth and Justice.

  9. Yvonne Lesley Fairfax-Jones 31 March 2021 at 16:53 - Reply

    Wise words, Bill

  10. Martin 31 March 2021 at 16:59 - Reply

    Bill, thanks for your thoughts and your help for the needy. As a 93yo retired engineer I need proof of theories but as a member of Kincumber Anglican Church I worship in faith. I begin my morning prayers with thanks to God for the creation of our wonderful universe, which many humans do not appreciate and who actively downgrade with critical activities like climate change and gender choices. There are many things we were never meant to understand or indeed to control, which I accept. I only want to spend my few remaining years helping others, within the limits of my capacity.
    Martin Wellington

  11. Michael Swan 31 March 2021 at 19:06 - Reply

    Rev Bill, anyone who “doesn’t know where to look”, only needs to look at you.

  12. Marilyn Stonehammgst 31 March 2021 at 19:44 - Reply

    Wonderful thoughts and words. We need to all stop and appreciate what we have.

  13. Heidi Struble 1 April 2021 at 05:08 - Reply

    This is so beautiful and full of wisdom. I often wonder how I have decidedly put the Great I Am into a box, how finite my thoughts can be for the infinite One. Easter blessings to you!

  14. Judith Barriskill 1 April 2021 at 07:39 - Reply

    Thank you Bill.

  15. Roger Joyce 1 April 2021 at 09:23 - Reply

    Train metaphors are poignant. Paul Simon’s lyrics to “everybody loves the sound of a ‘Train in the Distance'” offers in the last verse: “What is the point of this story? What information pertains? The thought that life could be better, is woven indelibly into our hearts and our brains.” I’ll add your exquisite train figure of speech to the collection. Peaceful Easter to you Rev.

  16. Joe evans 2 April 2021 at 14:28 - Reply

    Tremendous stuff bill
    Great insight
    Got me thinking again

  17. Cheryl Shaw 2 April 2021 at 18:27 - Reply

    My interest in what you do started with hearing an ABC radio interview where you talked about your experience on the stairs at the Wayside Chapel. Recently heard a reflection about these “Road to Ameaus ‘ moments that may have to last us our whole lives to sustain our faith if we are open enough to recognise them in the first place. In the words of the hymn “take the veil from our faces, the veil from our hearts”
    Thankyou for sharing your thoughts with everyone

  18. Peter O'Reilly 25 July 2022 at 13:42 - Reply

    You put Jesus, Buddha and Mohammed in the one sentence and never once mention the true meaning of Easter – that Jesus Christ died for our sins and rose again. The greatest miracle of all time. Maybe next Easter you might mention this

  19. Megan 13 April 2024 at 23:56 - Reply

    Love your sense of wonder. Beautiful piece of writing. I think people just want something that makes sense- not something they have to struggle to understand. They want to put their faith in ordinary things and everyday people- is that what you mean by ‘all that is’?
    Let’s make Easter a day for law reform and the unjust or wrongful imprisonment of innocents. Perhaps we should all donate to Amnesty International.

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