Wednesday, February 20, 2013

shooting down arrows of patience


Fear is something we all know. Perhaps the greatest fear comes when we realize how much is not in our control. 
We equate control with security, with safety, with predictability. 
The few things we have in our control we tend to hold on to very tightly.
--Frank Quinlivan, C.S.C.


Bills on my mindset / I can't deny /That they're gettin high
This is just a journey, Drop your worries
Preach, Mr. Grammar. Preach.



One day, not too long ago, I (almost literally) stumbled into a small little Chinese pastry shop in Chinatown.
That small little Chinese bake shop has become my dragon's hoard, it calls to me with a sweet smell, and the enticing remembrances of red bean buns, and chocolate rolls, and egg and ham buns and puffy coconut pastries.
If I could be a snail, and choose which building I could carry around on my back as a house, I would choose that little shop.

As I walked away, delighting in the culinary goodness that a pocketful of change had bought me, I munched on my red bean bun, and, at the first bite, the discovery burst out of that red bean bun.
The red bean bun tasted like Brompton Oratory.
Not that I've ever tasted Brompton Oratory.
Obviously.
But it tasted like Brompton Oratory infused with my grandmother's kitchen.

Brompton Oratory and my grandmother's kitchen, on the surface, appear to be almost exactly the opposite of one another.
I've never found two things to be more intimately related.

~

There once was a boy named Chris McCandless, who one day just up and left.
Just like that. Up and left.
He started roaming around the country, and he dove deeper and deeper Into the Wild
He left behind everything that we associate with the idea of security: he left behind a home, college scholarship, a stockpile of food, a steady income.
He ditched all these outward accoutrements of security for something a lot bigger and bolder (definitely more Romantic).
I wonder if Christ McCandless considered himself an impoverished, insecure human being, or perhaps he saw himself as the king of security.
Perhaps he found the secret of being secure in happiness.

Which, could be, perhaps:
Instead of being secure in those things that bring you happiness or joy, being secure in Joy.
Instead of being secure in those people who love you, being secure in Love itself.

~

Brompton Oratory and my grandmother's kitchen, on the surface, appear to be almost exactly the opposite of one another.
But in each of them, I am secure.


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