I was amazed at how much people thought about god and how deep some of the ‘theology’ I found. As I said before this is not about uncovering the whacky or extraordinary, on the contrary for me the moving ones are the people that are having similar mundane struggles with their relationship with their god, or who have created their own faith out their experience and practice.
I met some lovely people, some lazy people and some arrogant people. It was emotionally exhausting but a wonderful project. I have talked a lot about the process and the data but in reality it is all about the people.
Read some of the thoughts, they are a poor reflection of the depth and delight I found in conversation, but hopefully give you a taste of the subtlety and inspiration normal people have in their own search for their god.
Here’s a sample. Full interviews (for you to give feedback please) are here
“I was brought up in a polytheistic sense, I didn’t think right or wrong of that, I just kind of did it because that’s what I was exposed to. But over time I felt that all these different Gods, that represented different aspects, were all ultimately leading up to one God. ” Abie, Brooklyn, 20s
“I think about it a lot, I mean everywhere, every day, with everything I do I just think about it. Should I pray to God or should I just do it on my own? Should I get help or should I prove that I don’t need it. I think about it most all of the time, when I’m doing work, at school, if I’m going anywhere, if I’m doing a sport. I can’t say there is a God, but then I can’t say there isn’t. There isn’t a God, yet there is. So it’s a big revolution in my head.” Adrian, Queens, teens/20s
“Financially it is not so great but God provide. I have faith. Sometimes I felt distressed, but I never lose my faith I always pray. God is only one. I pray to the saints and the blessed mother, but God is only one. I have a big statue in my house of the blessed mother and every morning I say the Rosary to her.” Agnella, Bronx, 70s
“I got back into it now but there’s been a time where I was in my own world. But growing up believing in God, you know it balances you out, it gives you a form of being, an existence. It gives you an understanding of where you came from.” Akani, Bronx, 30s