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Resident Aliens

Posted by Erik on October 9, 2009

This is the title of a recent sermon at a Presbyterian church that I pass every day on the way to work, as advertised on their signboard. Having been raised a “preacher’s kid” in a fairly conservative Christian environment, and seeing so many familiar topics in the sermon titles at this particular church, I suspect that I could write that minister’s sermon myself almost word for word. Dollars to doughnuts he talked about how we humans (or at least Christians) are “in the world but not of it”, and how we don’t really belong here, how our “real” home is with God in Heaven (but only if we believe in Jesus).

I don’t normally pay a lot of attention to the sermon topics there – like I said, it’s all so familiar – but for some reason, at this time and in this season this particular topic has stuck in my head… both the familiarity of it, and the realization that there is no longer even a tiny residual corner of my psyche that’s wondering “what if they’re right?”; the whole theology behind it seems so – well, alien – to me now. It’s so obvious to me that we are a part of whatever is, and that our true home is right here… and if we don’t start acting like it, the whole house will eventually collapse around us.

And on that note, I’m going offline for a few days – see you next weekend!


3 Responses to “Resident Aliens”

  1. Kullervo said


  2. Hrafnkell said

    I’m betting you’re right about the preacher’s angle. And that is what sets us apart from Christians…we are of this world, and our gods are of this world…and in a very real sense, I think, THEY (Christians and their god) ARE aliens (and look! they’re admitting it!)

  3. luckyloom1 said

    I feel exactly the same. My religious background preached a similar thing and I remember what a powerful experience it was to ‘allow’ myself to challenge those ideas. I was shocked that even after leaving Christianity behind many years before, those assumptions were still impacting on my life – and not in a good way. I think they made me very afraid of being here. When I came to feel myself a part of this wonderful mystery, when I began to embrace and engage with its cycles positively, it really felt like the most profound healing was taking place. It’s no wonder we are in the mess we are because to be repeatedly told we don’t belong is like being psychologically torn up by the roots. I suspect that if we all learn to heal that original act of emotional and spiritual ‘violence’ upon our psyches, then our world has the greatest chance of healing too. The bond I feel with the natural world makes me hopeful that this is possible. Being here is amazing, isn’t it?

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