Saturday, December 26, 2009
Whenever there is a special occasion, the birth of a child, a wedding, graduation, or even a funeral, when end of the day eventually comes, there is that pause where one reflects on the significance of the event. It is here where each emotion is grasped and carefully placed into perspective relative to time, either to past events being summoned from memories or to the imagination of the future. One is not so much seeking answers here, but rather what it is really about, is questions. It matters not the time or place questions are always present in the foreground, veiled in mystery, often they are ignored, but they exist. The philosopher is always seeking to get your attention and focus on these questions. GK Chesterton once wrote “Philosophy is not the concern of those who pass through Divinity and Greats, but of those who pass through birth and death. Nearly all the more awful and abstruse statements can be put in words of one syllable, from ‘A child is born’ to ‘A soul is damned.’ If the ordinary man may not discuss existence, why should he be asked to conduct it?” The Philosopher: George Bernard Shaw (1910). The time comes at Christmas, after the last desert is eaten, and there are no more packages under the tree, family and visitors have driven away in the cold December night, when we begin to ask those questions. It is precisely at this time the void between the excitement or anxiety and the stillness and solitude of another day coming to an end that we ponder about, the virgin Mother and a little Child born in a stable, or of angels announcing His glorious arrival. Man desires to know and is compelled to ask questions. This is not so obvious because our secular society has declared that the game is over, truth is an unknown commodity, or at the very least exists as miniature truths scattered about. Yet from the beginning of the story of man, life has been about questions: "Did God really say, 'You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?" or a young Jewish virgin pondered her role in salvation history; "How can this be, since I have no relations with a man? to when Pilate said to Jesus, "What is truth?" I guess what I am trying to say is that it seems most of the time we live life in a kind of stupor, a state of sleepiness, ignoring what Jesus advised us to "stay awake" Either we are trapped in the anxieties of living in the modern world or we have bought into its dead philosophy. It is in asking the questions that we truly live: Who is God? How can I get to know and understand Him? What is my life about in relation to all this? Be not afraid, for the the Truth is waiting to hear from you.
Posted by Paul Bernacchio at 8:54 AM