Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Carry That Weight (a long time)

As much as there is wrong in the world, it's still perfect - beautiful in its existence and possibility.  

With out sickness, war and poverty man would be a robot; love and light would have no meaning.  We would be indifferent to nature and kindness.  Our purpose and work would vanish along with our free will - the will to do good in the face of all odds.  To care when no one cares.  To brush ourselves off, get dressed and go to work with our head raised high.  Even as everything collapses and the dirt of the world works hard to break us.  Somehow, the chosen few carry on.  

I have seen it in Haiti, after the earthquake.  In Colombia, amidst vengeful civil war.  In Zambia and other parts of sub-saharan Africa, with the everyday holocaust that is the Aids epidemic.  

Some people call this hope.  I don't.  It's not hope that motivates these people; it's the joy of expressing your will upon a situation that is supposed to defeat you.  It takes a brave person to fight the odds, to know with certainty, that certainty is not on their side.   

How difficult it is to accept this simple truth.  How unconsolable we get in the face of obstacles and tragedy.  If we only just remind ourselves that things are the way they are supposed to be, though our work is to make them, and ourselves, just a little bit better through our humanity, grace, dignity.  

The truly great are not products of their environment.  Where every indicator points to them becoming X, they somehow become Y.  Call them mutants; I call them human, truly human.     

Prison made Malcolm, Malcolm X.  It hardens most; breaks many.  But it made him, him.  And his truth thundered.    

Burdens strengthen, burdens break.  But you'll never truly live if your not grateful to carry that weight.  Most of us, our world, mediocre people, they spend their lives running from this.  They want the comforts of carelessness.  They want to be free though they forget that "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."  

And that was an Orwellian quote, if I ever heard one. 

No comments: