The first time I remember feeling and knowing there was a God, something with a felt consciousness that was in all, occurred when I was 3 years old sitting and leaning on our old garage as the sun set over the fields in Oklahoma. The completeness of being alone and the “presence” of the evening was all encompassing. I felt whole and at peace in my 3-year-old self. I remember later trying to tell Mom what I experienced. She listened quietly, smiled, and said simply, “Yes.”
This same complete experience also occurred later when at 37 years old after ending a marriage, I moved from Kentucky with my 3-year-old daughter to Portland, Oregon to go to naturopathic medical school. My first year in medical school included a Gross Anatomy Lab which was a dissection of the human body. I remember feeling simultaneously repelled and excited. As we stood around the body of someone who had donated their body for our sacred learning, we felt nervous and grateful. Our lab assistant suggested we say a prayer of gratitude to the person for giving us this gift of their body, a perfect manifestation of God in Nature. Due to drawing the shortest straw, I had the “honor” of making the first cut. After feeling the overwhelming primitive repulsion, I used my scalpel to make a cut up the left side of the abdomen, across the top under the ribs and down the right side. Gently and respectfully laying back this “flap” of skin, I exposed the abdomen. I remember tears coming to my eyes. I could see, even at first glance, the presence of God. I could see the miraculous intelligence of the design. Each organ was shaped to exactly fit the curves and shapes of the neighboring organs. These neighboring organs were intricately connected through function, blood supply, and design to be exactly where they needed to be. My mind exponentially grew and out of my mouth came the words “Oh My God! What a Fancy Container.” Even through our protective masks with filter cartridges came nods and sacred sounds of awe and appreciation.
— Patricia Timberlake