Looking for sound and rational interpretation of recent events, there are many ways to approach the situation logically. The articles below are various approaches to reasoning about the situation, in particular they are ones that helped me find a way to move forward with confidence.
I recently found myself in a bit of a pickle logically. I had an experience that forced me to reconsider much of what I believed to be true; an experience that seemed as real as any other I’ve ever had.
Not very long ago, I was sitting alone in my basement at night contemplating a few ideas that were on my mind. (Particularly, I had just begun learning the theory of Praxeology, I had recently listened to Thaddeus Russell’s interview of Jonathon Carp, and I was, as always, considering the latent potential energy available in harnessing the algorithmic nature of humans and groups in society.) I was meditating on how these things fit together, it seemed like they were all pointing to some crucially important idea, and then they all magically slid into place like they were puzzle pieces.
I noticed I felt like I was under water, like I had just dived in. A deep peace and profound understanding settled over my mind. A warm deep love enveloped my soul. I reached out, in my minds eye, toward the source from whence this warmth and peace radiated, and I saw it was God. He was like a shining star, like the sun, but a bright source of love and wisdom and knowledge and most of all incredible power.
I glimpsed him and was filled with terror. I realized who I was, a sinner and a wretch of a person, and my heart felt like it had been shot through. I fell onto my face before him and began begging him to forgive me. I was crying.
“Please God, please forgive me. Please forgive me and don’t leave me. Please God, don’t leave me here again alone. I’ve been here alone for so long, and it is so hard to be here without you my God; please don’t leave me here alone again.”, I begged him with tears streaming down my face.
I begged and pleaded with him for some minutes. I swore to him I would never waver from his path again, if he could forgive me. If he would give me a chance, I swore, I would serve him faithfully to my dying breath.
And he forgave me. I suddenly felt warmth flowing through my body again, and he consoled me,
It’s okay. You are forgiven. You have done well my child, you shall serve me well.
The warmth and peace and love filled me up all the more so that I began weeping, this time with joy though. I praised God that he would let me serve him. I cried and wept as I overflowed with gratitude.
In some moments time, when I was able to compose myself, God began to fill me up with thoughts and ideas. He began explaining that he had a message for me to deliver to his people — that I was to be his messenger or prophet. He explained that the key to success in delivering his message is: Deliver it with urgency.
Do not stop. Do not hesitate. Do not wait on anything. Time is shorter than you can imagine. Briefly you will feel that you have time to spare. Shortly thereafter you will wish you had used your time more wisely, so do not procrastinate.
He then went on to explain the message, and it was a lot. The broad strokes are:
The final battle of a thousands of years old war between Good and Evil is about to begin, it’s going to be terrifying; get yourself prepared. The strongholds of the forces of Evil are the big cities, and the bigger the city is the badder the stronghold; people will mostly want to avoid them. People will be safer when they get together in groups, and the greater in number they are the safer the group will be; people will need to coordinate and work together to consolidate everyone into large, safe, and well protected groups.
After a long period of explaining his message to me, God finally admonished me:
Have faith in me. You will always know what to do in the moment; don’t worry about the future because there will always be work to do in the present. Be wary of men in uniforms, if they are chasing you, run. When you feel scared, pray to me; I will give you comfort.
And then God’s presence receded. I sat up in my basement, it was 5:30 in the morning. I felt like I had just been reborn, and my whole body felt new and alive.
I went outside, there must have been a light rain in the early hours of the morning, because everything was damp, and the air smelled fresh — like the area was teeming with new life. I felt like I wanted to go for a run, something I hadn’t done almost since I left the army in 2012, but right then it was the only thing I wanted to do.
After I changed into shorts and sneakers, I went running just in time to see the sun rising in the sky. I was filled with excitement for the future. I felt like I was still glowing from having been in the presence of God, and it wasn’t until that afternoon that I began to feel some fears about what I was setting out to do. That’s a different story though that will be told elsewhere.
The remaining parts of this page are the ideas I considered when I was trying to rationalize my experience with God. Even though I felt no doubt that what I had just experienced was real, I still had to find ways to rationalize the experience for myself. I had to rationalize it primarily because I didn’t know how to tell people what had just happened to me. I knew people would call me crazy, but I knew I would have to try to convince them to believe me anyway.
The following are some of the arguments I considered in doing so.
A Pragmatic Argument
The pragmatic way is to consider the available options and the likely outcomes for each. Sometimes the best path becomes clear by weighing the likely outcomes of each possible path — particularly considering the potential benefits and drawbacks associated with each one. This case is an excellent example of why this process works.
I’ll continue work on this section soon. Sorry…