Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Time Without The Timeless

Distracted from distraction by distraction
Filled with fancies and empty of meaning
Tumid* apathy with no concentration /

Men's curiosity searches past and future
And clings to that dimension. But to apprehend
The point of intersection of the timeless
With time, is an occupation for the saint—

-TS Eliot, The Four Quartets

Once a person or culture rejects any belief in the transcendent and the eternal and all that remains is the material, all that’s left is despair or its weakling twin sister, boredom. If there is no eternal Creator and Father of us all, no timeless moments within time, then there is no transcendent purpose or meaning to life and history. All we have, then, as the French philosopher Camus saw, is absurdity and despair. “The only serious question in life,” he said, “is whether to kill yourself or not.” Not having the courage of their convictions to embrace the reality of what it means to be locked within a world without the eternal God, Americans, by-and-large, have opted to embrace the weakling twin sister.

Having made such a choice, however, theirs is not simply a meaningless life of boredom where each person daily seeks to be “Distracted from distraction by distraction.” No: having chosen to reject the Creator and Sustainer of the universe, they are also now subjected to the tyranny of false-gods. After all, as Eliot said in 1939, “If you will not have God, (and He is a jealous God), pay your respects to Hitler and Stalin.”

Civil Government Demanding an anti-God and anti-humane conformity for the sake of an “equality” that never has and never will exist, and justifying its tyranny of centralized powers on the grounds of “efficiency” and “progress,” our Leviathan-like government strangles to death all diversity, variety, and individual freedom. Boredom is now a legislated societal norm.  

Education Statist education supports this boring conformity with an unrelenting war against excellence. Rejecting books that exalt transcendent Goodness, Beauty and Truth, it replaces them with dull and boring reading material written for the lowest common denominator, as well as with books that covertly or overtly exhort us to conform to the dictates of the State. Augmenting this war against the transcendent and excellent, students are taught that no person or culture is allowed to stand out due to singular achievements: all are to be given awards for merely participating.

Work Businesses, seeking higher and higher degrees of efficiency for the sake of higher and higher profit margins, treat people as cogs in a wheel. Not seeing each person as being created by God in the image of God and for God, there is no such thing as human dignity, only so many objects to be shuffled around the Monopoly game-board for the sake of the almighty dollar. Having accepted the lie of time without the timeless, the cogs embrace their fate and go through their days in dreariness.

Individuals Rejecting their status as being made a little lower than the angels and placed in a world enchanted with God’s presence, the only course left to the unbelieving blind is being subjected to the machinations of the Great Herdsman of our culture and the diversions of the vacuous fads and fashions of the meaningless moment. Of course, anarchy (aka, cultural suicide) is another option, but that’s a post for another day.

Is it any wonder that so many of us seek to be “Distracted from distraction by distraction”? No longer seeking to apprehend “The point of intersection of the timeless with time,” or the eternal guiding and defining the temporal, we become inanimate objects ruled over by the whims of others and a heartless fate. Time without the timeless filled with tyrants who control our times and, as Eliot wrote in his Four Quartets, a pointless “rising and falling. / Eating and drinking. Dung and death.”

*  Tumid: Swollen; distended.

Copyright, Monte E Wilson, 2016

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