Freedom's Long Road

Wednesday 27 May 2009

I should be sorry if I had any earthly fame, for whatever natural glory a man has is so much detracted from his spiritual glory. I wish to do nothing for profit. I wish to live for art. I want nothing whatever. I am quite happy.
~ William Blake

Goodness, that is beautiful. If I can put aside my own incompatibilities with that statement and sit in his shoes and imagine how it must have felt being William Blake, I can understand how his wish as an old man for a young child was that God might make His world as beautiful to her as it had been to him. What great freedom William Blake had. I understand that freedom and stand in it swinging my arms, but I would be a fool to pretend ignorance of those contradictions that bind me whenever I want to prove myself by what I do, to bolster up my shaky self-esteem on accomplishments, on individualities, on being good in a competitive sense.

Not of course that this is a regular state of motivation for me, but it is still present, sitting out on my kidneys like fear, poking up its ugly head. Still bidding me to the fact that I am not as free as William Blake was. And that sobers me and it gives me hope, all at the same time, and calls me forward. It takes my own breath away when I feel how much life God wishes to breathe into me - is doing so.

Sometimes, I can quickly lose a sense of meaning and fall into despair. I do not wish for it to be so, but this is what happens. It happens when I spend too much time online, as I did last night, another bout of self-sabotage sending me tired to sit aimlessly clicking when there were books to read and dogs to pat and friends to speak to on telephones. Being online is wonderful but oh, boy, it is not neutral. it needs to be an accessory and a tool rather than a lifestyle, at least for me.

The Spirit returns me, this evening after work hopefully, back to the playroom to be creative once more, immersed in clay. It is where life makes sense for me. Clay is so easy to mould when the fingers that mould it are wet. I do believe none of our tears are wasted.


  1. And OOPS for the long comment. :)

  2. Sigh. I always hate posts like this. It's a combination of conviction and sadness. For I know some times I'm online waayy too much. Caring about the people I know out there, almost wishing them into my life. I've never dealt in anything shady or immoral online, but then, there is something askew in it simply being a primary form of community.

    But it makes me sad too...sad that I wish I had a place to be home to me. Sad that you don't have one. And sad that we can't be in one together. "WE" as the big collective of people I have come to know here. In this funny space of pixels and soundcards and I's and O's and electricity.

    I was thinking just today...why all the shifting NOW? Why the whole moving on, postmodern thingy in church? Why NOW? Why haven't humans figured some of this stuff out 100 or 1000 years ago? Because it seems so elementary. But it was because the no one ever heard the squeaky wheel when it was all alone. So people had to choose to remain in community on "their" terms, or be entirely alone.

    And I suspect it's all because people like you and me and countless others never had a way to pool our voices before. We, in the past, would have been lonely whiners, disfellowshipped or whatever. Alone. Because we had no way to find the others. But now, in the last 10-15 years, we have a bigger, louder voice together. And I am good with that, because without all these other echoing voices, I would have lost my marbles.

    But yeah, community with some kind of skin people is probably a good thing. I don't know. I chase my tail.

  3. No, great comment, Erin. It all makes me sad, too :(

    Yeah, I can still remember the shift of going "wow!" when I Googled something like "don't want to go to church anymore", feeling like a heretic, like I was backsliding, like my faith was falling apart (whereas it was actually my health, when I first got sick). And I came across Wayne Jacobsen's So You Don't Want to Go to Church Anymore article and oh, the resonance was beautiful :) And then coming across likeminded people and realising that I wasn't alone, that while there was nobody in my actual life who was going through the same thing, that online there was a whole mass of people who were going through the same thing, and who were alone in their little pocket as well. I shall never forget that time :)

  4. I think the road you are on is leading you to that place William Blake occupied

  5. Thanks, Kentster. that's what I feel too, when I spin around going "wheee!" and feel the air through my fingers. Even if I fall in some potholes while I'm spinning :)


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