Brian’s Reflection: Thursday, September 23, 2010
Our conscience is not the vessel of eternal
verities. It grows with our social life, and a new
social condition means a radical change in conscience.
Walter Lippmann, American newspaper commentator
and author, born on this date, 1889 [died 12/4/74]
Exactly. I wrote recently about “relativism”. I’m “fer it”, as I remember saying. The only “absolute” I choose to believe in is the Unconditional Compassion of the Universe/God/Whatever You Want To Call It. But remember: this is a choice of mine. This is the way I want the Universe/Life to be. There is no proof that God/The Universe/Whatever IS Unconditional Compassion. We make our choices, and presumably try to live by them.
I am a perfect example of what Walter Lippmann has said. Just because Plato and others have, in their own way, said that there are “eternal verities” does not make it so or make it “true”. They too did just what I have done – and what most thinking people have done. This is also true of those who believe in so-called “divine revelation”; they have made their choice from among many – including from among many so-called revelations by deities.
I started with what I was “taught” from my early childhood, by parents, ministers, family, by what I saw in the community that surrounded me, etc. That includes everything from reading Dick and Jane to seeing the Blessed Sacrament in a golden monstrance paraded through the streets of Verdun by gold-cloth-clad priests under a golden canopy. At every stage of my Life, new things have entered my consciousness, and I have made choices along the way based on those things. This process has not changed. At 64.5, I am still having experiences and reading and learning – and I am still changing my mind. Practically every day of my Life, I am changed by my society, and “radical change” happens in my Consciousness.
This is what it means to be human. I can’t tell you how radically my ideas and concept of Life and God and Meaning and the Universe has changed through the years! I see this a what it is to be Alive, to be growing, to be reaching for the most wondrous truth about what it means to be a Human Being, and to be the unique Me.
The lovely thing is: I think I have actually caught a glimpse of that mysterious thing that God is reported to have said to Moses: “I am Who I am”. It has required going beyond most of the things I have been “taught”, required taking the next step.
I find it fills me with Joy, Wonder, Peace.