I’ve had a weary streak. I have rather ‘not enjoyed’ people saying things I basically agree with. That bothers me. So I said to myself: “maybe you don’t really agree with those things?” But I don’t think that is it. I think I am suffering from something more basic. I think there is a sense in which liking coffee doesn’t mean I am going to enjoy hearing others go on about how much they like coffee, or how, or why. Sometimes I do, but maybe I have done that too much. I have overdosed on some circles of mutual admiration. Is that it?
I miss surprise, I guess. I mentioned a while back that I missed tribe, but that turned out to be only partially useful. Surprise won’t be it either. It has more to do with mystery which is only partially elusive. I don’t want to be agnostic or fundamentalist on hardly anything. I want to be loyal and useful and humble and alive to possibilities and uncertainties and surprises. Maybe I just miss not feeling responsible for more than my shoulders can bear. I want to be somewhere between the despair of thinking as a worm and the delusion of believing i’m a god. I should find that Tolkien quote… done:
“Then the prophecies of the old songs have turned out to be true, after a fashion!” said Bilbo.
“Of course!” said Gandalf. “And why should not they prove true? Surely you don’t disbelieve the prophecies, because you had a hand in bringing them about yourself? You don’t really suppose, do you, that all your adventures and escapes were managed by mere luck, just for your sole benefit? You are a very fine person, Mr. Baggins, and I am very fond of you; but you are only quite a little fellow in a wide world after all!”
“Thank goodness!” said Bilbo laughing, and handed him the tobacco-jar.*
Hmm. I think I’ll go get some good beans for the coffee-jar. I suppose I am sometimes useful, but I am quite a little fellow in a wide world after all! Let it be enough, Goodness; and thank you.
*the conclusion to The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, who died some time ago and is now… well, that is a question, isn’t it?