could the factors that determine the outcomes of out lives be transcendent of the surface of a largely arbitrary social consensus? it's very likely that they are. "god" and "karma" are both examples of extrasocial explanations of the working of the universe (natural selection too!). we can imagine something bigger, and thus our intellects are liberated from the arbitration of our eras.
we are free to think bigger thoughts and live smaller lives (in our own estimations). we are at ease to commit horrible atrocities, armed with the knowledge that tar, feathers and public opinion aren't really hell. maybe there is no hell. maybe there is. it is in this line of reasoning that we can start to expect to wobble and/or soar, perhaps crash-landing with excellence on the rocks of impassioned indifference. ingenuity may thrive and frustration may abound.
we have slipped the grasp of moralism, sink or swim.
we can learn to love, only to be mocked for the sentiment, chained half-willingly to the outside of society, spit on by the unsuspecting, with the keys heavy in our back pockets. the powers that be and the powers that want to be have in common that they fail to recognize the value of helplessness. what is regarded as pathetic in this life may be of infinite value in a contemporary eternity.
to that effect jesus is quoted as saying "unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven."
can i launch into a discourse now on how to be childlike in your living? i asked myself that, while i was thinking about writing this. i can't, but i want you and i, reader, to understand why so many do:
- not everyone knows what it is like to be a child. for instance, my thoughts were fear-motivated as far back as i can remember. i discovered wonder and ecstatic abandon somewhere around age 15.
- the childlike experience is by no sense uniform. scholars may be hard-pressed to determine and communicate the specific of this quote, and many others like it. it's very unclear, but many demand clear answers.
i am of the opinion that it is a pathetic tendency to focus on the acquisition of physical objects. i believe the current wisdom is: ' you can't take it with you when you go.' that's an incomplete reality: you can't take it with you ever. while i can't speak authoritatively of the spiritual realm, your physical belongings can leave any moment. surely you recognize that there are forces beyond your control.
perhaps it is equally grotesque and pointless to engineer and entertain notions of a fantastic afterlife in which all things will be made right, and all persons set in order.
"the kingdom of heaven is within [among] you."
well, is it?