Tuesday, May 07, 2002
"If knowing answers to life's questions is absolutely necessary to you, then forget the journey. You will never make it, for this is a journey of unknowables - of unanswered questions, enigmas, incomprehensibles, and most of all, things unfair." - Madame Jeanne Guyon
"Whatever faith may be, and whatever answers it may give, and to whomsoever it gives them, every such answer gives to the finite existence of man an infinite meaning, a meaning not destroyed by sufferings, deprivations, or death." - Leo Tolstoy
I've been contemplating more and more about the mysteries of life. Friends often ask me what I do everyday, and while my basic activities of sleeping / eating / watching TV / computer / reading are pretty consistent, I find parts of my brain processing at times the current limbo I'm in. I suppose now more than ever I understand the angst Dustin Hoffman had in The Graduate, though I certainly don't have a middle-aged woman obsessing over me (thank God, haahaha). Part of dealing with all this doubt and lack of purpose I think has to do with being comfortable with uncertainty and not having the answers I want, right away. I often forget I'm the child of culture that is fixated on knowing everything, from the way our education is structured right down to intrusiveness of tabloid journalism.
Of course, there's nothing wrong in making an effort to understand things, because I believe true learning to be one of the most enjoyable privileges of being alive... I suppose what I'm thinking of is having the wisdom to appreciate my own mortal limitations. Growing up a PK and in the church, I find sometimes I relegate God to a comfortable little box in my mind. A box where God fits everything I think He should be like. Pastor Taido preached a good message at AACF last week where one of the points that stood out to me was that we, as people, often make the mistake of thinking that we can fully understand God and fathom him - that human beings, as finite creatures, cannot possibly knowing everything of about an infinite being. Pastor Taido's point was that keeping that fact in mind helps us as people to have a healthy relationship with God, which is exactly the same principle in human relationships... that healthy relationships are founded upon an understanding of the true characteristics of the other person. So I guess I'm still adapting to becoming comfortable with having "un-knowledge" of God.
I admit, I have a fascination with knowledge... heck, I just spent an hour watching a documentary on the real-life Scorpion King on the History Channel. Egyptologists believe the real-life Scorpion King founded a dynastic period that pre-dates the previously known earliest period. They're calling it "Dynasty Zero"... no joke. It's nearly 3:30 in the morning and I stayed up to learn that completely useless fact. How wacky is that?
In any case, I got the quotes and some brain wrinkles from "Reaching for the Invisible God" by Philip Yancey, which focuses on doubt in the context of the Christian faith. Good stuff, I'm about half way through.
A well written article analysis about the A&F controversy by one of my favorite independent Asian American media outlets, hardboiled, can be found here.
"...And while they [A&F] will need to minimize the impact of protesters and other irate individuals, they can count on the support of their Asian constituents, who will lash out at anyone not following that publicly laudable virtue of total assimilation. Already, Carney has been forwarding his own evidence of Asian complacency, noting that the designer of the offensive shirts was a Korean American and that his Asian co-workers didn�t mind the shirts, without noting that none of them make up a representative sample of all Asians Americans. Complainers are being framed as bunch oversensitive, politically correct malcontents, maybe even as an insignificant but noisy minority of the Asian American population, and probably will lose in the court of public opinion... "
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