Monday, December 16, 2013

Strange Beliefs and The Necessary Propensity to Hold Them

Look at it out there, dusk-like at nearly noon, the trees bare dead looking sticks, even the evergreens a black shade of dark, the grass a sickly yellow brown, once pretty fallen leaves crushed and tattered, mud streaked everywhere, no sign of life to be seen, not even a fly found so annoying last summer, sky a putrid pale color of nondescript pale. Yet, we believe spring will come? Imagine being a child just becoming aware of the world and of cause and effect and asking whence your morning cereal came and being told it grew on a plant last summer? Grew? On something out there? We are expected on this day to believe that green growing things will rise up from the drab dank ground, that those barren branches will grow plates of life like the pages of junk mail we toss in the recycling only green and soft, that birds will fly thousand of miles to sing in the quiet dead air again, that animals and frogs will come up out of the ground, that there will be FLOWERS! Yes! We believe that on a day like this. We must! Yet that propensity, that willingness, that EAGERNESS to believe opens us to believe all sorts and kinds of other unlikely and improbable, even impossible, things like conspiracies and demons and guardian angels and spirits and gods and visiting aliens and force fields. No wonder we have difficulty discerning real from not real, true from utter bullshit, because if we did not possess that ability to believe in things unseen and only hoped for, we'd just succomb to the fear that this was all there is and throw in the towel on a day as gloomy and dark as this. Spring: I believe! The other stuff? Not so much.