Saturday, October 23, 2010

Son rising

When I worked in a classroom with eight year old children one of my strategies was to reverse roles and concede power to the child. It was playful and often disingenuous on my part. I would get things wrong on purpose so that the child had the experience of correcting and even chiding me.

When I was little my father, whose middle name was Victor, invariably put himself in the position of loser when we boxed and wrestled on the hearth-rug. He so wanted me to have the victory over him, to excel him in strength. It was as if he knew from the start that I would never use my power against him, that I would never knowingly and avoidably give him pain. I never did. What is more our loving kindness was entirely mutual.

I was reminded of this truly filial relationship during a recent visit to the Octagon Theatre in Bolton. In the play Rafta Rafta a father and his soon to be married son seek to humiliate each other through an arm-wrestling contest. Such a contest between me and my father would have been excruciating. And it never would have worked. We should each have been trying too hard to let the other win.


Anonymous said...

Hi. I am a blog surfer. I noticed your comment about far-fetched ideas. It sort of goes along with the burning question I have had for a long time: Why does anything exist (including God)? The fact that there is material strung throughout the immensity of space forever in all directions gets the wires in my head smoking hot.

Hop in your space ship, set the speed to 99 trillion light years per second, and after one million years, you are still going to be dodging planets and suns.

First Stephen Hawking, and last week some knucklehead from the United Nations, said that we ought to avoid contact with aliens from outer space because they just might be dangerous. Actually, the UN nut said, "Humans are most likely not equipped to deal with aliens from outer space." After making that brilliant comment based on nothing but their imaginations, they both said that if we ran into these scarey aliens, they would most likely just be bacteria anyway. Smart people can be So Dumb!

When someone tries to tell me there is no God, I remind him that one would have to be a god to know for a fact that there is no God. Unless you have godlike powers to penetrate the entire universe and all the dimensions of existence, you cannot say there is no such being lurking in the shadows of the stars and constellations.

I also marvel at the scientists who bother to estimate the size of the universe. They are like the mouse in the field, attempting to calculate how many blades of grass there are in the world. They have no idea. Start with Infinity and add two, bozos!

Their primary problem is that they have to start with the current universe being the result of an explosion. This means, of course, there is an outer edge and a finite amount of material. Sorry dudes. You are not even close to reality.

That's all. Thanks for listening.

goodfornowt said...

Dave, thanks for your comments.

May I quote Celia Green:

"On the face of it, there is something rather strange about human psychology.

Human beings live in a state of mind called "sanity" on a small planet in space. They are not quite sure whether the space around them is infinite or not (either way it is unthinkable). If they think about time, they find it inconceivable that it had a beginning. It is also inconceivable that it did not have a beginning. Thoughts of this kind are not disturbing to "sanity", which is obviously a remarkable phenomenon and deserving more recognition."

As CG says, being alive is so disturbing. So why are very few people disturbed by it? And why do we treat disturbed people so harshly?