ANOTHER POINT THAT CONFUSES people about me is the whole idea of the supernatural.
"The entire universe you live in: the world of basset hounds and couches and supernovas and praying mantises and chocolate ice cream"
Of course I'm not the only inhabitant of that realm, even in human imagination.
I share that distinction with angels, fairies, vampires, the devil, ghosts, leprechauns, and even Santa Claus.
I think this may be part of the confusion.
The problem is that there are not one, but two supernatural realms, and they often get confused.
Surprised you, didn't I?
You thought I was going to say there's no such thing.
Well, there are two such things, and it helps (or at least it helps you humans) to keep them separate in your minds.
The word "supernatural" itself simply refers to a world which is both "not natural" and, at the same time, something greater than natural.
The reason that there are two kinds of supernatural is that there are two kinds of natural worlds, which overlap to some extent.
Sometimes, when you use the word "natural" you mean this world, the one you can see and taste and smell and touch--the entire universe you live in: the world of basset hounds and couches and supernovas and praying mantises and chocolate ice cream, the world that includes your best friend, the pacific ocean, and that slight itch on the end of your nose.
Sorry about that last one—go ahead and scratch it, I'll wait.
I didn't throw it in just for kicks, though.
It's an illustration of what we're talking about.
Some people might think that if I mentioned an itch on the tip of your nose, and you suddenly develop one, that it would qualify as a supernatural intervention—an act of yours truly.
But it's not, of course: not if we're using this first definition of natural.
Anyone could have done it—and, by the way, those of you who haven't given up yet should just go ahead and scratch now.
You're not even fooling yourselves.
The idea of the supernatural as something other than the entire universe that you can observe with your normal senses, or even with a scientific instrument, would classify my itching nose trick as completely natural—just a normal case of suggestion and suggestibility.
It would reserve the term supernatural for whatever it is that lies beyond that universe, the reality you can't observe, even with scientific instruments, but which is the ultimate source of this world.
Next time, I'll give you some concrete examples of what is, and isn't "supernatural" according to this first definition.
Until then, please leave your comments and questions below.
The Ground of All Being