Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The End of Days – When Everything Will Be Fixed, Right?

Jimmy’s teaching and our dialogue this past Sunday got me to thinking about how impatient we are to have things Fixed – and how we seem so often to think, or at least behave as if we think, that there is some magical RIGHT answer. If only we could discern it . . . .

It’s especially easy to be impatient these days, when so many people are confronted by so much in the economy of the World that is genuinely scary. A magical reversal of fortune has a huge visceral appeal. Couldn’t someone please make that happen?

But I also got to thinking about what it means to be Fixed, and was reminded of an old song: “Soon you'll attain the stability you strive for/in the only way that it's granted/in a place among the fossils of our time.” Not the most famous of Jefferson Airplane’s lyrics perhaps, but thought-provoking nonetheless.

When we hope for something to get Fixed, we usually have one Fixed Image in our minds. But think of all the fables that have evolved over the centuries to illustrate the adage, “Be careful what you wish for; you might get it.” And in our scientific age we even have a formal name for it: The Law of Unintended Consequences.

But, for better or for worse, “Life is Change; how it differs from the rocks.” We know this is true in the World, and if our fleeting glimpses of the Kingdom suggest anything, it seems to me that they suggest that stasis doesn’t play a big role in It, either.

If that’s true, then maybe a really important step toward living the Kingdom life is not only to be on the lookout for the “Something Good [that] This Way Comes” as Jakob Dylan tells us, but also to remember that each thing (good or bad) is but a beginning.

Trading in our hope for the End of Days – or more immediately, Three (easy) Wishes – for real attention and very deep patience promises a lot of disequilibrium. But maybe we really do have to abandon Terra Firma, at least in our minds, if we want to reach the Kingdom.

No comments: