I Stand on the Precipice of Change

I Stand on the Precipice of Change



I stand on the precipice of change. Crying out blindly and hoarsely for the outstretched hand I do not perceive. I am bound by chains of indecision and fear. Everyday my regret grows deeper, as I continue to regret not having acted sooner, and as I regret the weight of my despair increases and I have even less strength to affect my surroundings. I constantly toil under the critic’s burden. I skeptically question all that I know, all that I am. Images of smiling faces and seized dreams dance blazing quick in front of my eyes. I reach for these starry illusions only to find them insubstantial and outside my grasp.

Funny how I can envision my reality so perfectly, yet do nothing to actualize the thoughts in my mind. I pray without humility, begging God’s grace, receiving it, and still sitting dumbfounded. I wish to run, swim, swing, and power through my obstacles, but the world is too clever for me. The world knows that I am all heart, muscle, and sinew. It sets its traps with guile and subterfuge. While I’m trying to kick the door in, Satan laughs as he sees my envy at my peers who have found the keys.

I’m scared. Always afraid.

What? What is so terrifying that it freezes my feet to the ephemeral ground, even as it crumbles and falls away beneath me. My mind is awash with ideas thought out to the third step and no further. I cannot hone my focus. Where is truth? This is the block I stumble upon. What is worth pursuing?

I have a theory that whenever pursuing excellence, once achieving a certain level of mastery, there a glimpse of the truth is available. Even if this glimpse is narrow, focused on a single element of creation, even if it is brief, a passing moment of assurance and justification, this moment is worth a lifetime of trial.

Certainty of a notion is enviable.

My resolve is lacking. I need that moment. I need that feeling of righteousness. I know that one day I will have it. There is a door, like I said that I must find the key to.  But where to look? I am in the realm of the abstract, I must move toward the tangible to find the key, and then open up the gateway to intellectual and spiritual wonders.

This is achievable. I can do this.

I know for a fact that I’m right on the edge; I can see the key’s reflection. I must venture down the cliff—sans harness—break with habit and trust in the strength of my grip holding me to my convictions, which are as precious and fragile as the holds on the sheer face of a rock wall. Descend into the murk of the mundane and retrieve the tool I need to escape my current paradigm. The drudgery involved is not unknown to me. In fact, I’m well versed in all the methods I would use; I simply fear the idea of being stuck in one spot. However, this fear has become my existence. This is no longer tolerable, and I must evolve. I must escape. I must seek the truth, the gifts of God’s promise, and the material will follow. I hold this truth to be self-evident. Now I just have to figure out a direction and sprint.

What to be sure of in an unsure world? Christ is the cornerstone, son. The one the builder refused supports the very fabric of space-time. Can’t beat it.

Christian superglue. Holding together the disparate ends of dogma and mysticism. He combines the love, grace, and forgiveness essential for human living. Scratch that. He does it for living period.

It’s recently come to my attention that all life has a form of sentience. Even the trees have a personality. An attitude, and an individual one at that. You can plant ten Japanese Maples in a row and not a damn one of them will look exactly the same. They are planted as close as they can possibly be without overcrowding one another and will all turn out completely different. Their growth depends on environmental factors as well as their interaction with one another.

Just like humans.

I think that these things all have a sense of humor. They watch as I prune away their lower growth and giggle at all their nether-regions being exposed for the grasses to gawk at. Jap maples are exhibitionists.

I think they work like people should, having an individual purpose, but acting as a collective. Not at the command of some overbearing central authority, but with an enlightened understanding of a common purpose. The purpose of being productive, happy, and free.

The difference is in the consciousness. Ours is thus far highly individual. Though the internet is changing that to some degree. I think the soul of a tree dances and mingles freely with its foliated brethren in a joyous organic concerto the likes of which humanity can only speculate upon. All of this is only conjecture, of course. I have no proof, only supposition and fancy. Which is the way I think most hypotheses should be approached really.

There have been all sorts of essays written about the unreliability of observable data. We bring to it an observer’s bias as well as our own flawed perceptions which time and again have been disproved. Not that all results are created equal, that’s not what I’m trying to say. Moreover, I would argue, that all conclusions should be treated with a certain amount of self-aware skeptical good-humor. A sort of: “Well, I guess it’s this way, or at least we should all assume it is, until someone smarter than me comes up with something better.” That’s the kind of mentality I think I’ll be living with for the foreseeable future.

A charming sort or rhetoric, don’t you think? Takes the pressure off quite a bit. Also, it allows you to accept criticism with a more humble kind of grace designed to frustrate your less thoughtful antagonistic types who arrogantly assert their perceptions as universal truth. Universal truth is morality. A correct direction for each of us to follow, that perhaps, varies wildly from person to person.

Freedom of choice is paramount. Freedom to live as you choose, and follow your bliss. This is truth.

A lot of people would object to that definition. Because it isn’t neat. It’s open to interpretation. It leaves a lot of flex room. Society wants things to fit in boxes. But the truth is that reality is too expansive for that. And while there are rules that govern reality, they aren’t easy to get at.

Truth is never as simple as it seems and never as complicated as we make it. Truth is recognizable in its familiarity and its novelty. You hear the words of truth spoken and you recognize the inherent signified beyond what pale symbols are capable of representing. When truth hits you, the freshness of new wet grass and blooming jasmine wafts to your nostrils. It’s a familiar scent that you’d nearly forgotten because it’s been so long since last spring.

Truth is the first “I love you” in a relationship. You’re so scared to say it, but a sublime relief passes over you once it’s out. Terror takes hold and wrings you out until you’re emotionally and physically drained, begging for the release of Divine confession. Then it’s out and the whole world blossoms lush and green, beckoning your embrace.

Praise be to God.

I see a tree that never loses its leaves; it blooms forever under a miraculous sky flowing with colors I’ve never seen before. The tree dominates the landscape it grows as tall as mountains and its roots are as vast as oceans. Its trunk is fat and deep brown, its branches extending in all directions web-like in their complexity. Its leaves unfold in bunches of seven. Each bunch contains bushels of berries. The berries taste of knowledge and eternity, containing within them entire universes of that which must still be discovered.

Now let’s all take a deep breath and climb.