Entry: Re-Examining "Something Extraordinary" Tuesday, May 31, 2005

I wrote the previous entry about my "faith healing" when I was somewhat less convinced than I am now about the naturalist worldview. My miracle was a sort of "holy of holies" in my life-story. It was here that I committed all my being to following Jesus and it was only when some doubts about that experience begin to emerge that I also began to doubt Christianity.

I don't question the faith lightly. I was a passionate believer for most of my life and those who knew me then still find my present agnostic state hard to believe. My family especially takes this hard. They tend to view me as a lost soul, needing to be saved.

Recently, I spent about 36 hours in Texas for an aunt's funeral. My aunt had been diagnosed with terminal stage 3 ovarian cancer less than a year ago. As a basically fundamentalist Christian, she planned her own funeral to include a strong emphasis on the belief that she was now with Jesus and that all of her Christian family and friends would see her in heaven themselves one day. My reaction to this heavy dose of religious zeal was less than enthusiastic. I know that many of them really believe in this notion, but I feel that I was being told not to really miss my aunt, which I really do. Doesn't the Bible call death an "enemy"? Why isn't it all right to feel anger at the disease that killed her?

To return to my miracle, I have since realized that I never could actually see what was going on in my mouth during this healing. To this day, I have a small opening in my hard palate. My admittedly uncertain memory recalls that it does feel smaller now than it did before the miracle, but I can't be certain how much of that recall arose from suggestibility. After all, we wanted a miracle very badly.

My hard-core naturalist and nontheist friends may feel betrayed by this statement, but what if my miracle were real? What if in the few weeks between the healing prayer and the day the healing "stopped" my cleft hard palate closed from about an inch to it's present quarter inch? It certainly isn't proof of an omnipotent creator. At most it might push the notion of psycho-somatic healing a little farther than science currently allows.

peace - Charley


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