Part I of the Brendan Liturgy Cont…
“…sail on the face of the deep where no riches or fame or weapons protect you, and nobody knows your name?”
A thought occurs to me with wonderfully terrifying clarity: There’s always new territory to explore.
In the past, I have contemplated the edges of this thought like a man walking around a car on a lot, stroking my beard and considering it from a respectable distance; uncommitted to it, studying it.
The thought came in the form of wondering what the super-famous and super-successful do with their time once they have achieved their…achievements.
I recall watching the members of U2 accepting one of their 7 Grammy awards for the album “All That You Can’t Leave Behind” back in 2001. I have no idea how many Grammys the band had won by this point, but it occurred to me…”Is this boring for them? Knowing that, at least on Earth, you can’t become a bigger ROCK STAR than what you are right now?…Oh My God…what if they’ve known that for years now?! What keeps these guys motivated!?”
This thought was all well-and-good when the potential existential angst posed by the thought was going to discharge it’s sticky anxiety all over Bono and The Edge. Hell, I might LIKE to see that!
But now the gooey barrel of this thought is pointed right at me.
Of course the terms of the thought are somewhat different: my Grammy closet is woefully under-used in comparison with Bono’s, for one thing. The likely hood that I will ever achieve the ultimate end of ANYTHING, reach the heights of ANYTHING, exhaust the possibilities of ANYTHING or discover the limits of ANYTHING is, shall we say, low.
But…what if (and here’s where it gets terrifying) it doesn’t matter if you’ve hit the limits; you’re still going to be compelled into something “next”, or you will atrophy and die.
What if we were MEANT to keep pressing out into open water? AND, what if nearly everything about modern, western society is designed to stop us. AND what if we’re to survive (never mind thrive) we must find our way quietly to the water’s edge under cover of darkness so no one sees – with nothing more than the shirts on our backs, a compass, some water and a half loaf of bread…and slip the boat into the inky black water, stealing away before the sun comes up over the horizon…and we’re caught?