Friday, November 10, 2006

A Hundred Pockets

How many days has it been since the bright sun has beat down on the fractured creatures that roam aimlessly through one day to the next on this spinning rock in an unconcerned galaxy? It has been grey out for fucking weeks now and I don't know for sure but I think the old S.A.D. is kicking in and it's not even the dead of winter.

Some old friends of mine are currently going through hell this week as they deal with family deaths and life-threatening illnesses. However, to quote from The Noodle's latest blog: "What’s more is that right now I haven’t got one single personal, financial, health or family problem of any kind" and in many ways I see myself in that boat, maybe not the financial one, but generally health and civilized (ie., caring to mildly concerned) relationships is probably the most we can hope for amidst the constant but stormy flow of reality.

My heart goes out to those friends who are going into their own personal wilderness to wrestle with demons or angels. According to the best of the theologians, niether camps like humans. Are we justified in attacking others because we are fearful? Dunno. But I do know that these experiences school us into realizing that life is short and that right now is all we got, so let's take advantage of that - the fact that we can breath and move already puts us in the gifted camp. As one of the greatest and most misunderstood philosophers once said:

"When one has much to put into them, a day has a hundred pockets"
---Friedrich Nietzsche

Friday, June 09, 2006

Why God Doesn't "Bless"

When I think of God, I think of an "object of devotion" and a "frame of orientation" (in the Frommian sense) for stability in a chaotic world full of contingency. Of course there are good things in the world and we have had good experiences but alot of what we might call a "blessing" from God is just our own interpretation of a an event. For some, they feel blessed that they have never had cancer, others expect not to have cancer. Some feel blessed that they are married, others feel blessed that they are divorced. Often Christian people associate wealth and social status with a "blessing" from God, but when they realize that they have become obsessed by material objects and their so-called friends have become disingenuous, they then feel "cursed." The Old Testament, the first part of the standard "Bible" as the Catholic Church would define, tells a story about a good man named Job who did nothing wrong but God punished him anyway by "de-blessing" him with the death and ruin of his family and livelihood. Some Christians would say that it was the Devil that hurt Job because God simply allowed it but, logically, if God is infinite, it would be impossible for the Devil to be "outside" God. However, despite that, the story only goes to point out the dual-nature of life itself and that the terms "blessing" and "curse" are relative terms and hermeneutically define each other. Through time we often come to see one was actually the other. Thus, it doesn't make much sense to say that "I prayed for this and God blessed me" because, interpretively, the flip side to any blessing is a curse. Logically, a fair and unconditionally loving God, would not play favorites with one person over another just because Dudley Do-right always went to church on Sunday, paid his taxes, and supported the war effort. God, as interpreted by theologians such as Paul Tillich and theorists such as Ken Wilber, transcends any conceptualization one may try to put into language. God transcends the very opposites of Good and Evil and thus defies any scapegoating by hate-filled Christians and hate-filled non-Christians. Thus, it serves no logical purpose to discuss "blessing" as an objective term as it implies that God is small-minded, partial and suffering from an emotional disorder and in need of anger management. A "blessing" is a relative and interpretive term and so if one wants to feel blessed than go for it but don't boast about it or use it as a 700-hundred foot pulpit to preach from because things in life change and life has a habit of knocking all of our dicks in the dirt. But then again, maybe that humility (humiliation) is the blessing.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Angel blocking the Garden

It sweeps us up. Change. Breaking the molds of what we think we know. Breaking into our lives like a home invader. Creating new sensations of pain and pleasure, but mostly pain. The good people on the street tell us it's "all in our heads," "it's how we react to it that matters," or something like, "it's what we do with it that counts!"

But aside from the conventional, drive-through answers to the most earth-shattering contingencies we can still find that reality has much to offer. What is this? It's personal. It's a personal battle with personal demons. It maybe a quest for a mediocre, cookie-cutter lifestyle like our friends or it may mean moving to a mountain cabin, growing our own food, smoking our own homegrown, just so we can see the sunset and not be interrupted. It may mean becoming a street preacher or a teacher, an extreme skier or bee keeper. It may mean doing great things and then writing about them, long and hard hours, at the computer. It may mean crunching numbers or becoming a skeet shooter. It may mean sitting back with a glass of rye and listening to this guy. It may mean helping old people get enough to eat or keeping terrorists from shooting kids in the street. It may being angry and hating non-Christians or being an example to Christians on how to forgive. It may mean shooting hardcore features or carving clay creatures. Learning how to sail or fix a watch or slapping some cream on that rot in your crotch. There's not much that one can say to appease ya, especially if you just lost your wife and house in Indonesia. Sound of gunshots, squealing tires, have a cigar and let's watch the fires. Early birds, grapes of wrath, old man singing in the bath, cancer patient reaching for a water glass. Poison in my blood, anger in my veins, why is joy always spiked with pain? Inside is outside, up is down, conservative liberal or liberal conservative, seven-nation army guns thunder an invincible sound. Hard to care, hard to know what's true. I'm just a clown, in the rain, playing the accordion..........for you.