Last Sunday, I witnessed a miracle.
In fact, I did not only witness it — I was a willing participant.
A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about miracles, and how I thought science produces more miracles than faith ever will, and I still believe that. While there are numerous testimonials of miracles due to faith, they are few and far between, and you never know when you can actually get one.
The beauty of science is that it makes its miracles available for everyone — through technology, mass production and distribution, until it becomes so common that people take it for granted and are no longer awed by it. Take for example, the miracle of me pushing the “publish” button on this article, and you being able to read it in a few seconds even if we are halfway across the earth from each other. How many people even think about that as a miracle anymore?
But that is not really what I want to talk about. Science is not the hero of this week’s article. I will concede that there is yet a greater and deeper miracle than science.
Sunday night is a time when our family usually gathers together to have dinner together. After dinner, my sister started playing the piano and my wife and cousin sang along. My 86-year old dad was there in his wheelchair, listening. They were singing Christian hymns.
I was heartened by sight of my father there so I went beside my wife and started to sing along on the bass parts. I was a choir boy for more than a decade after all, and even if I had not sung these songs for a long while, I still knew most of the parts by heart.
My family knows about my doubts and unbelief. In fact, they do not approve of a lot of things — this column I write, for example. However, we have had a decent conversation about this and have agreed to some sort of truce.
However, I still do not go to church, don’t participate in prayer, and don’t do other churchy stuff.
So I don’t really know what was going on in their minds when I began singing those hymns, and it was not just half-hearted singing, mind you. I was singing with gusto. I enjoyed what I was doing and even dancing along to the music with my wife. Pretty soon, my other sister joined in, along with my brother-in-law, my aunt, and a couple of my nieces. We were now a full-fledged choir complete with 4-parts. And we sang with wild abandon. My mom recorded us with her iPad until she ran out of memory.
For a few moments, we put doctrine and dogma aside and we simply connected as a family and as human beings.
I posted this little story in my freethinkers facebook group, as well another atheists/agnostics group and got several likes from both, and no condemnation whatsoever for “succumbing” to religion — which only goes to show that beneath all the superficial belief systems we have built, we still understand what it is to connect and be human.
And this is miracle more marvelous than either faith or science. It is a miracle that occurs in the heart when enlightened by a heightened consciousness of our shared humanity. It is a miracle that can be brought about, not by some supernatural force out there, but by the greatest force that resides within us — love, compassion, acceptance and forgiveness.
There are many things I do not agree with in the writings of Paul the Apostle, but I believe he had it right when he said that the greatest of all, is love.
Originally published in Sunstar Davao.
Andy Uyboco is a businessman, trainer and speaker. If you want to show me a little love, send me your email at email@example.com.