Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Cage

My worst fear of all time is being restrained. Someone locking me up in a cage and leaving to rot all by myself in a tiny little cage with no purpose in life but to sit and wait for my death. Nothing else scares me more. I would rather die a million deaths than have that happen to me.

And yet, there are cages everywhere in my life. A cage of fear, fear that holds me back from saying something that needs to be said, fear that holds me back from expressing my "fullest me", fear that just puts me into this little mold of what I should be but never what I could be if I opened up the door of my cage.

There's also a cage of solitude. One that traps you in front of the television, in front of your video games, in front of the computer, in front of your telephone, your music player, etc., etc. You're trapped in a virtual world. Virtual meaning "NOT REAL." When your conversations start revolving around a world or a person that does not exist, you know that you're in a cage of solitude. Where did the rest of humanity go? When did we decide that the only way to entertain ourselves was to pick up our computers and go on facebook, or to pick up a controller and watch the O.C. or cartoons or the latest movie? When did our lives get so completely and utterly boring that we don't even talk to the people in the same room as us? Instead, we just watch others live another life and think that it's the greatest thing since cheese. I. HATE. IT. I want to break those chains more than anything. In fact, I have an urge to pick up a baseball bat and just start smashing the television in my living room at this very moment... but I will restrain myself.

the very world around me is a cage. The media is censored to tell me what it wants me to know, the schools and universities are censored to tell me what they want me to know, video games are censored to portray what they think they want me to know, books even portray what they want me to know. I do not hear about the things that my government or the big corporations don't want me to hear about. I do not hear about the life of the murderer. I do not hear about the lack of power a citizen really holds in this government we call a democracy. I do not hear about the lives of child soldiers in the Democratic Republic. So here I am. A product of the knowledge that has been predestined for me to know. Is there anything that I have truly figured out for myself? No. Not really. I am trapped at this very moment in a cage of predestined knowledge. For creativity is something very rare. And those who possess it are diamonds in the rough. Do I have the power to question, to think, to create? I don't know.

In many ways, the bars of my cage are a little more flexible because of the truth God's been able to show me through Jesus Christ. The truth and grace and love He brings me is the only truth that I have any sound belief in. As crazy as that might sound. Cause in every piece of nature, in every person, in every creative work, I see a glimpse of a creator. The divine artist. And Jesus, who's life displayed the greatest kind of truth and love that I've ever seen, claimed to be God, and so i believe. I believe the man who's life was not caged. And who was killed for it.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

All You Need is Love...

Love without courage and wisdom is sentimentality, as with the ordinary church member.
Courage without love and wisdom is foolhardiness, as with the ordinary soldier.
Wisdom without love and courage is cowardice, as with the ordinary intellectual.
But the one who has love, courage, and wisdom moves the world. -Ammon Hennacy

The world is one messed up place. It's really hard to think about it all for a long period of time without eventually wanting to just put those thoughts away and find something happier to let your mind dwell upon.

There are wars today in the name of peace and justice. There are churches fighting against the rights of gays and lesbians in the name of truth. There are atheists today fighting against religion in the pursuit of reason. There are citizens today "tolerating" people out of "love."

And there's something really bothersome about it all. Something that makes me want to break. Because, yes, I think it's important to have peace, to have justice, to have truth, to have reason, to have love. I just don't think humanity has quite gotten their fingers around how to get these things all together, or maybe, what all of them really mean.

We value supporting our troops, going to war to bring peace and freedom. Can I ask whether this is simply one-sided? What about the people we are fighting against? Are they also included in this equation which equals out to peace and freedom? If we support the value of love, I don't think killing our neighbour quite follows this trend. If we follow the value of courage, then I still don't think killing our neighbour follows this trend. For if you were truly courageous, you would chance to sacrifice yourself to try and help someone by not killing them. That would be the scary part-facing death to help someone else-and it requires true courage. If we support the value of peace, then no, war is not the method. Arguments require two people, but they can be avoided by the gentle kindness of one. Peace is finding a resolution that puts another above yourself. is it possible that instead of going to war, that we could send doctors? that we could send teachers? that we could send missionaries? For getting rid of hate requires a change of heart. Are we willing to put some cream on the callouses of hate that have built up on the hearts of our enemies, or are we indifferent? Hm.

Thoreau said "the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation." There's something about our way of living that lacks something... concrete. As if we know the principles, the values, the arches which govern our actions, but we don't know how to fit them all together. Or maybe we don't want to. Because we know that if we were to ever determine the true arch that governs our actions, it would require something of us that we don't want to have to be. And so we are forever in a state of desperation, striving for love, courage, wisdom, but never quite living them out to the point of their true fullness.

But then again, maybe we can find them in God. ;)

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Gotta Love Keats

So I'm a lover of John Keats. He's pretty much a genius. Anyways, this is one of his love poems. ;) Hope you enjoy this poem as much as I did!

Bright Star, Would I were Steadfast as Thou Art, by John Keats

Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night,
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
Like nature's patient sleepless eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task
Of pure ablution round earth's human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
Of snow upon the mountains and the moors;
No yet still steadfast, still unchangeable,
Pillow'd upon my fair love's ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever or else swoon to death.