Wednesday, November 21, 2007
The Path To Salvation
I read an article today about a preacher accused of fathering a child with his brother's wife -- the paternity test proved this claim true, the story as old as the Bible itself. What interested me was that the preacher had told her that having an affair with him (one that lasted many years) was the only way to salvation. Man, I thought I had heard some lines! According to the article, the church had grown diseased and ill since its heyday in the sixties and many believed it to be a cult, a word I dislike in the same way I dislike the word addiction to describe any excess -- there are shopping addicts, sex addicts, love addicts, and so on. So boring. To label something is not to see it and seeing is the one thing a writer cannot afford to lose.
There's an African proverb about one who has been bit by a snake afterward being fearful of a piece of old rope. Having lived this truth for many years, I can say that I still startle easily, still have nightmares. Psychology dubs this post-traumatic stress disorder, another term I can't abide. I'm so stressed, people will say, which means absolutely nothing in a society where stress is like air and where we are inundated with enough assaultive cell phone rings, sirens, and buzzers to keep us at perpetual high alert. To look closely without the scrim of bullshit terms, to see the hurt and loneliness of our times, whether it be a snake or a rope, will be our salvation. Otherwise we risk hanging ourselves with whatever is handy, and somebody will do a post-mortem and tell us what we suffered from, as if to contain its harm from spreading.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"This is hell. I made it myself and I will live it in myself." Allen Dugan
Drinking children's show suggestion: Good people, the day has arrived! The first season of Sesame Street is out on dvd.
Benedictions and Maledictions