And here is the missing piece that I have found. Even if there is not a God, the only way to protest against the absurdity of a Godless universe is to act as if there were one. Thus if the absurdity is that we are capable of loving but the universe is not, my protest to cosmic lovelessness is to love widely and deeply until my dying breath.
If the absurdity of the universe is that it is drenched in death and dying, then my protest is to affirm life and fight death at every juncture. And when death inevitably reaches out for me, may I have just enough time to laugh in death's face. Not to act in this defiant fashion would be to affirm suffering and death as the way things should be. In so doing, I would be death's accomplice.
This, then, is my resolution. Objectively speaking, whether there is a God or not, I shall act out of the belief that God is my healing companion. And if it turns out that there is no God, my life shall be a rebellion against a godless universe. In either case, my actions will be identical. Either way, what matters is courage in the face of one's honest wager. Indeed, faith is belief and will, in determination of a vision. W. Paul Jones in Teaching the Dead Bird to Sing.
I'm not sure what sways a person to the above acceptance. It's existential philosophy, n'est-ce pas?, with a theistic angle. Theism is admitted due to a yearning for love that's deep within, pounding, humming, swaying, within all of us. Why do we not accept this? Why do we substitute with simply stories, or simply tangential experience? There must be a Reality, and there must be a Reality which holds hands. I offer mine out: I feel the pressure when I do. Ah, and it speaks of a deeper life. Thank you, Mr. Jones, for those beautiful words. He seems to take Pascal's le pari (the bet) a step further, one which means something for this life instead of just for an eternal consequence. I like it.
My week was full of pies; eight pies to Wednesday evening for our Bon Appetit! Les Femmes! French country pie supper. Pies, existentially speaking, soften our abandonment to the wolves. Pies represent fullness, harvest, love. Thank you, my sweet little Ozarkian mother for teaching me that!
Thursday afternoon, I met an old friend at a local brewery. She had the afternoon off, and like her mother at lunch a week before, she wanted to talk about theater and religion. She's not sure what she believes yet, but she feels that yearning for love in her spirit. She detests and distrusts the Protestant conversionary injunction (understandably), but I believe that she wants to board a boat before too long. Too much treading results in weariness and a sense of purposelessness for her. What will she choose? We talked about Buddhism and Tao-ism as religions and then Christianity (whose proximity, particularly after the bad-rap from the election, is unfortunately negative right now) which offers the Personal in the form of a covenant, and then later, a person. She was raised Catholic, so perhaps that will soften and allow her to view faith less rigidly(or most likely, it could work in reverse of that). I told her that "admittance" or "allowance" is what conversion can simply be about. That a moment in time is often remembered when one does hold out her hand in acceptance. Then steps begin to happen. It was a cool conversation. I pray that she makes the choice that is the best for her. (Of course, I have a certain hope in mind due to personal experience!) I've never had a conversation like this one where the other person initiates her own route so eagerly.
Must go. Have a foggy football game to attend!