Wednesday, June 14, 2017
June 14, 2017
Morning at the Y, smitten by what must have been a deliberate convention of handsome men. Fairly good painting afterwards, a statue in a formal garden. My neighbor Ray is apparently in jail. Miss him. His studio will be taken by a jeweler, Steven says.
Wrote this to go in Facebook, but realized I wasn’t up for all that would follow:
I’m detaching this comment from all the places on FB where it’s being talked about, so no one feels personally attacked or challenged. Please attach “In my opinion” to everything I’m about to say. I think it’s odd– by “odd” I mean “foolish”– when people equate atheism with advanced intelligence or powers of reason. Many of the favorite people in my life are atheists, or declare themselves to be, and though this does not make me love them less, I know that there is one important destination we can never travel to together. Those of you who know me know I never proselytize– in fact some people are surprised to discover I’m a believer– but that is not because I doubt my own faith, but because the objects of faith are so palpable to me that another’s not perceiving them seems wilful and outside the realm of useful discussion. The sphere of Spirit is real and palpable, and those who do not perceive it are not advanced but rather deficient. A person who is tone deaf–or actually deaf-- is not considered to be offering a real or useful critique of music when he remains unmoved by it, or if he should asset its non-existence. My massage guy has a very slight sense of smell, and to him most tastes are fables. I myself am not very good at Math and have more than once declared, or felt like declaring, “math doesn’t matter,” but that is an expression of my limitations and has nothing to do with MATH. Some people understand abstract painting; others do not. We may think that those who claim to understand it are “making it up,” but they would not think so. You may think a believer is imagining or willing the spiritual presence guides his life, but to do so is a kind of smirking arrogance that most of us would deny ourselves in other contexts. Not one person on this planet has the experience of the absence of God. Those who fail to experience the presence of God may be content with that (no reason NOT to be content with that) but maybe should stop short of asserting that out of their blindness arises a genuine description of the world. I too am fed with organized religion and want it out of government, etc, etc, but that is hugely not the same thing as atheism. I want the Faultless Body of Christ to be free of all that crap; I do not misidentify the Body with the crap. So, OK, be an atheist, but stop being so proud of it. You are not advanced. You are, from other perspectives equal in wisdom and perception to your own, wilful or deficient. And right now God is rolling His eyes and saying, “Do you really think I need you to fight for me?” sigh—
My thoughts fly westward to D, who may in fact be the man of my dreams, the one I was looking for down every alley and in every street, perfect in every way, physical, moral, spiritual. And Irish. The fact that nothing can come of it is one of God’s little jokes. The timing is off by 40 years. Even the sexuality does not matter so much, for the kind of heroic friendship I imagined might have been free of sexuality– maybe would have been better, purer free of it. But– no. Not even a spark. That I can be reasonable about it, that I can look at it and dismiss it with a “well. . . well. . . “ says something about my exhaustion after all these years.
Had to hack out new bamboo shoots brought on by the rain. Writing at a new play.