There is no place where God isn’t – Rebbe Nachman of Breslev
As often happens, when I opened up Likutey Moharan I got to a lesson (number 33) that seemed very appropriate to the whole discussion of finding God even in those places where it appears He isn’t.
Like, in all those conversations we all have with the ‘difficult’ characters in our lives who like to refer to us as ‘parasites’ or ‘leeches’; or all the difficult circumstances we sometimes find ourselves in; or even, just in our mundane interactions with the ‘real’, or materialistic world.
Sometimes, it can be so easy to forget that God really is behind all this stuff.
Here’s a little of what Rabbenu says about the subject:
“…one must know that ‘The world is filled with His glory’ (Isaiah 6:3), and that there is no place where He is not (Tikkuney Zohar #57, 91b) – He fills all worlds and surrounds all worlds (Zohar III 225a)…..
“As our Sages have already revealed to us, in all material phenomena and in all foreign languages one can find Godliness, for without His Godliness, they have no life and no existence at all.
“However, that life-force and Godliness is minimal and in extreme constriction, only enough life-force to sustain that thing and no more. This is because God contacted His Godliness in many and various constrictive ways…until the central point of the material world, which is the realm of the klipot (forces of evil)….
“And this is the meaning of the Yerushalmi verse, “If someone asks you, ‘Where is your God?’ answer him, ‘In the great metropolis of Rome.’….This person who asked…is certainly sunken in the realm of the klipot, for he has separated himself from the Omnipresence…and expressed his belief that God doesn’t exist where he is.
“Thus tell him: “Even where you are, sunken in the realm of klipot, even there you can find His Godliness, for He sustains everything…and from there you can bind yourself to Him and return to Him in complete repentance.
“He is not far from you, only that where you are, there are many concealing garments.”
All of us can come back to God in the blink of an eye, because wherever we find ourselves in the world, including in all the spiritual filth and heresy that unfortunately characterizes so much of modern life, there too, we can find God.
All we have to do is look.