I seem to have survived my operation, and am back to work. In fact having a kidney removed is not much different from having a tooth yanked: You are not much good just afterwards, but….you yet over it.
But perhaps, as you have body parts yanked and cut out and cast into the dumpster, you start to realize that the part of you that goes on is not the body. After all, if they keep chopping off parts of me, and I keep going on, eventually I won’t be bothered by various appetites, because there will be nothing left to get hungry.
I’ve reached the fourth quarter of my life, and, if you ever have played a grueling sport, you understand how surreal things get when you glance at the clock and see the time is running out. Cassius Clay (Mohammed Ali) described the fifteenth and final round of a boxing match as a “dream-land”. In a strange way it is similar to the dream-land children are in, as they just start life. The old are like the young, and their experience is a “second childhood”.
Of course, people who are stuck-in-the-middle miss the dream-land that both begins and ends life, and call themselves this boring thing called, “sensible.” (Yawn) Yet they argue like the dickens about the dream-land, even as they deny it is anything more than a dream.
One argument I’ve had to deal with, as I run a Farm-childcare, involves whether children are sinners or saints. For various reasons this is something that certain stuck-in-the-middle people feel is very important to decide. Their entire philosophies depend on deciding, for once and for all, what children are. Are children splendid and beautiful and pure, and so precious that we corrupted adults can only harm them, and therefore children must be handled with kid gloves? Or are children basically little devils, seething with selfishness, brimming with “original sin”, who must be whipped into shape?
(Obviously this must be decided, if you are stuck-in-the-middle, for there is a difference between “kid gloves” and “whips”.)
For an old geezer like me the question is stupid. Children are neither saints nor sinners. For crying out loud, children are children. Have you no eyes?
However people stuck-in-the-middle demand answers to silly questions, and so I will heave a sigh and, pretending to be a wise yogi up on some cliff in the Himalayas, supply an answer to the question regarding whether children are sinners or saints, and the the answer is, (drum roll), “Both, but neither.”
If selfishness is wrong, babes are sinners, because they don’t practice self denial. For the small there is no distinction between want and need. When hungry, they make that fact known. It is ridiculous to imagine they worry like adults do, about whether their hunger is a need that nourishes, or a want that will make them fat and need to diet.
If disrespect-of-laws is wrong, again children are sinners, for the only way they can learn anything about the laws is to test the limits. This includes the Law of Gravity. It is ridiculous to feel you are harming a child by drawing the line and telling them where a limit is.
(In my profession it has become something of a joke how the “authorities” insist you must amend the way you treat children, and the following year they amend their own stupid amendment. For example, ten years ago it was wrong to tell a child, “Get in the car.” That “stifled freedom”, and instead you were suppose to say “Would you like to get in the car?” Now the same “authorities” scold you, if you say “Would you like to get in the car?” because it burdens children with more responsibility than children can handle.)
In the end there is only one subject children are superior in. It is best described by witnessing a babe enter this world from between a woman’s thighs, be brought to her breast, and to see that the child never once asks to see his mother’s driver’s licence, or some other form of ID. Nor does the child ask for references. The child is born with faith.
Faith is a given. You don’t gain it; it is something you lose when it is shattered, and unfortunately in my business I’ve seen the shattered. Heroin is a serious problem in New Hampshire. Some mothers are too drugged to respond to their baby’s cries. Sometimes the mother is dead, as the baby cries. The result is small children with the hard eyes of bankers.
But even if heroin wasn’t the problem, there are plenty of other ugly things that mangle and claw the beautiful faith we are born with. Left to our own resources, we would all eventually prove scientifically that faith is stupid. The very thing we are born with would be proven to be unscientific. Speaking only for myself, I’d say this world was doing a very good job of making me scientifically unfaithful by the time I was twelve years old.
If the faith a child has in its mother is a good thing, and if a faith a employee has in a boss is a good thing, and if the faith a citizen has in their government is a good thing, and if the faith a person has in their religion is a good thing, then it takes more than being left to your own devises. No infant can keep the faith without the mother being worthy of faith.
In other words, this cruel world will destroy our faith, unless older and wiser people keep the faith. People mock the idea of being “born again”, when religious fanatics speak of it, but it is a truism, because life is hard and cruel and tends to kill us, until we meet some person who keeps the faith, and restores our faith. To restore faith is indeed like being “born again”, for it restores us to the original situation, when we did not ask our mother for an ID and references, and simply trusted.
Life is a heck of a lot easier when you can trust. After all, hiring private detectives can get mighty expensive, when you distrust and have to make sure a person you need to trust isn’t sneaking about behind the scenes. Yet parents and the government do this to me, demanding I get a background check over and over to make sure I am not some sort of sexual predictor, though this is expensive. Fingerprinting alone costs me around a hundred dollars, and that is just the start.
I’m getting old, and this entire business of needing to pay to prove my innocence, or else be judged guilty, is getting old, as well. I know there are vile and sleazy people in the world, but must I be degraded? It sure looks like it. There have been so many scumbags that the innocent must pay.
There is scripture that states, “It would be better to be thrown into the sea with a millstone hung around your neck than to cause one of these little ones to fall into sin.” As far as I am concerned, that is enough. I don’t need the Federal Government to step in and fingerprint me.