Saturday, May 29, 2010

evil

inspired, yet again, from a conversation with friends (hence i cannot take credit for this musing), how have certain things come to be labeled as "evil" compared to their opposites/contrast? i am not talking about ethics here so much as about archetypes and stereotypes that aren't really founded in anything concrete.

take music for instance. certain genres of music have become somewhat stereotyped as "evil", esp. heavy metal or metal in general. screamo voices (regardless of the lyrics) and the cords/keys of music that are common to metal are often immediately written off as "evil", but the content and intent behind the music is not necessarily so. are lyrics or sounds more powerful in suggesting an "evil" nature to someone?

also consider emotions. anger and wrath are often seen as "evil" emotions, but why? I, for one, believe their can be a righteous anger...Christ exhibited anger at the Temple (John 2:12-25) and God showed righteous wrath all through the Old Testament...and i don't consider either emotions in those cases to be "evil"...so must anger and wrath always be evil when coming from man, or does it more depend upon the condition of the heart behind the emotion (or any emotion for that matter)

finally, there are certain archetypes in literature that suggest evil, but for no true rational reason. crows and ravens are attached to a dark, ominous stereotype as are black cats. certainly "superstition" is part of it...but how is it that they became attached to such superstitions? the color black is almost always the symbol of evil in stories and movies, but black inherently isn't evil...so why was it chosen to represent evil and not, say, white?

just wondering...no real answers i guess...perhaps these kind of things stem from the overwhelming need of mankind to categorize everything...plus its given me food for thought

Thursday, May 20, 2010

party

It would be interesting to keep track of just how many parties one attends in life. I think the creation of a party goes beyond a desire for celebration, I think it is connected to something deeper in human nature. We have graduation parties to celebrate the completion of education, a baby shower to celebrate new life, a funeral to celebrate (for lack of a better word) the completed life of an individual, a wedding to celebrate the beginning of a new life of two becoming one, a birthday party to celebrate the completion of another year (or the beginning of a new one?), a going away party to celebrate the end of one chapter of life and the start of the next, etc. And while celebrating for celebrating sake is certainly enjoyable, I think that the desire (need?) for a party serves to satisfy deeper needs.

First, these types of celebrations become a tangible marker for chapters in our lives. Without a graduation celebration it just doesn't feel like you finished school...the cap and gown somehow make it official. Similarly, years of life tend to bleed together if one doesn't have a birthday party...you almost forget your own age after a while or have to think twice when asked to state it.

The other deeper need these types of things satisfy is our innate necessity to share in life with one another. A wedding is largely the bride & groom's opportunity to bring all those that are significant to their life together and let them know that they are (indeed) significant to them, that they are the people that they value most in their life. Its almost a silent "thank you" card. Going away parties are similar, and attendance to such a gathering lets the individual that is soon to depart know that they will be missed and that they are supported. The desire for such gatherings reveals to me all the more just how much God created us to love one another and to bear with one another...and that I find to be the best reason to celebrate.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

fog

There are certain chapters in everyone's life (or maybe just mine?) in which God keeps you in a fog. It leaves us feeling lost, confused, and frustrated for a lot of the time, but at the same time it is sort of freeing in a backwards sort of way. It frees me from planning because...well...i just can't. If my future is a fuzzy blank space in my mind, how can i possibly go about concocting a plan to reach it? This foggy period I'm in now has forced me to look more to God, to lean more on Him for guidance and to admit that I don't "have it all figured out". It has humbled me to accept the love and service of other people as they lend advice, a hand, or just a listening ear (and willful heart in prayer) It has freed me to be open with others which has freed them to be open with me. It has allowed me the blessing of bearing with people in my life the burdens that we each individually carry, and I have gotten to grow deeper with many people in my life. All because of the fog...a blessing inside of a curse, how God often works in my life.