On The Anvil (#2)
Thoughts with some reservations. Get them out- and then aim for clarity and centeredness.
-I’m sitting in a Panera Bread in Grand Rapids, MI. There are some very classy people in here. I mean- fantastic scarves and overcoats and it all seems so European chic. But it also seems so cold. Some people have recently remarked- my thoughts are interrupted by, judging from the looks of it, a wonderful elderly couple. Back to what I was saying, I’ve heard more than one person talking about the “coldness” of people and interactions here in Michigan, especially certain parts. I hadn’t ever really given that any thought, but- after hearing it- I can see it. With awareness… perception changes. But not everyone here is cold. Not at all.
-I finished my first semester at Spring Arbor. It was good. Someone asked me last week if I regretted coming here.
Nope. I don’t. Not at all.
I haven’t enjoyed all of my time there. In fact, I’d say most of the time I haven’t necessarily enjoyed. This is due mostly to 1.) the atmosphere and 2.) the concept.
I’ve always found myself more apt to truly pursue the meaningful in settings that aren’t necessarily considered “Christian”. I don’t want to get into the nuances of that statement. The effect that the setting oftentimes has on me is very sterilizing- I tend to forget things because they’re taken for granted. It’s difficult at times.
And the concept- I’ll just use an M. Scott Peck quote to summarize my thoughts- “To be organized and efficient, to live wisely, we must daily delay gratification and keep an eye on the future; yet to live joyously we must also possess the capacity, when it is not destructive, to live in the present and act spontaneously. (Road Less Travelled, p, 64)” The struggle is in the balance. Which is true for e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g.
Facets of this experience have pushed me and stretched me in several key areas, and I’ve met people that I’m so thankful to know. I see so much room for improvement in my own life and, in all honesty, though I’m constantly pining for the mountains or “freedom”, I’m looking forward to the challenges… opportunities… that lie ahead.
-I saw Kenneth Thomas last night. He did well. He definitely didn’t stick to melodic progressive trance or house which is unfortunate in my eyes, but it was a fun evening. He did drop Hot Mouth/Chris James- “Totally Worth It” though- which I was so down with… It’s so far from his roots, but that bassline… yeah. Was really blessed with good company as well…
-I’ve got some Thomas Merton in front of me and a whole day to spend with him. And Adam Haslett. And M. Scott Peck. And God. Good deal…
-I pick Trevor up from the GR airport at midnight tonight. Really looking forward to that and his time here.
– I slept in my car last night. It was absolutely wonderful. It’s no fluke that I was so very much into “vandwelling” in High School. I wonder how my old inspiration Two Knives Katie and her dog Mutt are doing…
Anyway-I hope that one day travelling aimlessly but absolutely meaningfully by vehicle will somehow not be as morally repulsive from a resource management perspective as it is to me right now. Waking up and driving off, not knowing where I’m going but fully taking in the warmth of the glowing sunrise, sleeping bag on my lap, pillow at my back. It was so nice… Someday…
-Listened to Michael Moore speaking on “Democracy Now” this morning. He absolutely killed it. So much of the reaction from notable recent events has been that of calls for treatment of symptoms- gun control law and reform, better contingency plans for chaotic happenings, etc. These are absolutely on topic and debateably useful, but so much is left unsaid about treating the root causes of many of the maladies that cause such happenings throughout the world. “It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society” J. Krishnamurti. It was nice to hear someone taking a look at the whole rather than isolated events and actions- absolutely a sociological perspective. Totally off topic, but I’m going to bring it up anyway- “Want to stop terrorism? Stop participating in it.” Noam Chomsky. Anyway- I’ve read some of Moore’s books and while I’m not his biggest advocate, I really appreciated his perspective this morning.
-As of about a week ago, I have a kitten 🙂 Her name is Tazo and she’s wonderful. I think she looks like a little brown lynx. When I get back to Jackson I’ll have to put up a picture. She’s staying there now- a friend is visiting the house at intervals to take care of her.
“I have suddenly woken up to the fact that somebody needs to be teaching theology the way St. Augustine did and not the way textbooks in seminaries do. Someone should be able to find the Living God in scripture- and this is his word- and then lead others to find him there and all theology properly ends in contemplation and love and union with God- not ideas about Him and a set of rules about how to wear your hat.” -Thomas Merton, The Road to Joy (p.172)