Saturday, January 3, 2009

In Nature but Not Naturally

I will be forgotten. Nothing I have done gives me any expectation that I should be remembered. I find it hard to get close to those around me. A comfortable distance allows me to hold myself above them. When I interact, their justifiable lack of deference to me reminds me that I am not exceptional.

This sad realization does not send me into depression. When I was younger, I considered how I would rectify the matter. I have not done any of these things. I am resigned to the very likely possibility that I will not do any of these things. I understand that the annals of history will not bare my name. I will be forgotten.

However, I am not sad. This does not depress me. I am in good company. I know my parents well but few else do. I know less of my grandparents and still less of their parents. After that all is dark for some time. Further back there is a Supreme Court Justice who only historians remember. After that all is dark forever.

Those who do know of their ancestors often only know a name. If they know more it is often a justification to continue with their own life. And when they are gone what they know will go as well.

I will be forgotten. I am not sad.

Those who have abandoned the possibility of God should be sad. They will be forgotten and their lives will have served no purpose. Even if their names are written in the annals of history such annals are temporary as well. All that they build or paint or write or invent will be crushed in the infinite march of Nature.

Through the infinite march of Nature a person and even the whole human race cannot even take satisfaction in being an anomaly. While the odds of Nature producing such as we are be practically zero, in the infinite space of undivine nature, an infinite variety of such as we are will be produced and destroyed. When we are gone we will not be forgotten. There will be none left to have even had a memory of us.

Nature does not remember or forget. It just is.

Runners often claim that when they run they feel more connected with nature. Why this would be I do not know. I run and run and am shocked to find that little of what I consider me is not already connected to nature. Something in me says "run" and I run. Something in me says "run faster" and I run faster. Something in me says "run farther" and I run farther. But my body will only run so fast and no faster, so far and no farther. The something in me is that thing, that essence that is me. The something that is me knows no bounds. The body is confined to the limits of nature.

It is when I am confronted with the reality that almost all that I consider me is a temporary manifestation of a miniscule bit of nature that I realize that within it there is only a small intangible something that is me.

I do not run because I connect with nature. I run because, at certain brief moments, I connect with that which is me but does not appear to be in nature. I run because, when I single out that portion of me that does not seem to be a part of nature, I find that portion that is outside of nature.

I consider if there is that that is outside of nature, it may be possible to believe that it is inside something else.

I am compelled to believe that that which is me is not natural in nature. That which is me is intended to be "in" something else. Where is that something else? Who will I find there?

And so I keep running.

The body aligns itself with nature and, indeed, is fused to nature inextricably. The more it breaks down, the more I separate from it and become aware of the me that is me. The more that I become aware of the me that is me, the more hopeful I become in that which I've been taught all my life. The me that is me is intend for something else. Nature cannot intend. Only God can intend.

I run to be connected to God.

While it is hard to imagine an eternity with a perfect God that would not make me superfluous, in eternity there is hope. In a forgotten mortality there is no hope.

In nature I will be forgotten, but now there is hope that in something else I will not.

I run to find what is me, where me is naturally designed to be, who the Designer is and what I was designed for.

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