Of late my thoughts have been focused too much on current events and politics. I do not want to write about those things because I think even thinking too much about them can be corrupting to the soul. It would be worth the thought and the corruption if I had any say in the way events unfold, but I don’t and it’s probably for the best because I am not qualified to pontificate and even less to act. But this is why I’ve not written much, the things I’ve been thinking are not good to write.
I am a bad person when it comes to politics, I become far too engrossed by the competing factions and the games they play to take each other down. I find the whole drama fascinating and I get a great deal of intellectual satisfaction from trying to figure out what is going on underneath the surface theatre, from considering who is sincere, who is not, who is outright lying – and in all cases why and how it relates to everyone else. I know the futility of my caring, yet I continue to care. I know that I am not smart enough or knowledgable enough to really judge a lot of things, but if anything that just makes the challenge more interesting. For me it’s a fun intellectual exercise, while for other people it is their lives or their livelihoods. For me the drama is thrilling but for people that are directly effected by it, it must be terrifying. When I was a child I was always so excited by talk of war on television, I sat at the edge of my seat, hoping for escalation, looking forward to the exciting new stories that would come tomorrow. Thrilled and mesmerised while people died, while people were tortured, while homes and businesses and whole economies were destroyed.
I still feel that way. Even though I know it is a terrible way to think and feel. People might say it is because I am spoiled, because I have never really suffered, because I don’t know what war and death and suffering really mean – and they are probably right. Sometimes I wish I could find out, because I don’t want to be evil. I don’t want to feel bloodlust or take pleasure in other peoples suffering – nothing makes me so ashamed about myself as this. It is wrong.
Maybe one day I will find out and regret, maybe I will have to really suffer to find repentance.
But maybe I will never repent – in my heart as opposed to my head – that is what terrifies me. What if I never conquer this part of myself?
“What should I have to give thee! Let me rather hurry hence lest I take aught away from thee!”
Will it suffice to go to the altar of the Lord bearing an offering of honest doubt? To approach with hope mingled with fear and uncertainty? Would it be better to be cold than lukewarm, knowing I know not? Is this honesty not better than a lip service without heart service?
But then would I give up my doubts if he offered to relieve me of them? If an angel came before me tomorrow and said “only say the word and you will have the simple faith of a romanticised peasant!” – would I accept then? Maybe if he came tomorrow, never if he came today. Do I not take great pride in my “sophistication”? In uncertainty, in “knowing I know nothing”? Does it not make me feel a certain kind of superiority to others who are all too sure of what they think and where they stand.
Worse still are my designs for the hoped for God. The mental construction of God as a tool, for self improvement, for social control, for comfort in the face of a cold hard universe and for hardness in the face of a soft mushy culture. Doubt is one thing, manipulation another.
How to approach religion after the enlightened deicide? That darkest of night where hope yet lives. When Zarathustra was alone, he said to his heart: “Could it be possible! This old saint in the forest hath not yet heard of it, that God is dead!”
Perhaps the saint had indeed heard? Did He not thus conquer death? Maybe the saint knew no grave could hold Him.