We can't say that all lives matter until we start treating all lives as if they all mattered. As if each was the most precious resource we have. As if losing one of us is losing all of us. “Oh,” a professor says in the play W;t, “it’s an allegory of the soul!” And it is.
Do you have a soul? We have to start with what a soul is, which should be easy, it's only four letters, but the thing is, it's not easy, even if it were three letters. We don't have a unilateral definition of the soul. We don't know where the soul "lives" in the body. We don't know if the soul is separate from our earthly experiences. All we have is a hopeful maybe.
In many ways, The Book of Ruth is a gentle echo of The Book of Job. In Job, we witness a righteous man destroyed for a wager who remains unwavering in his faith right up until he asks, "But why?" The Book of Ruth is also about a life interrupted by Divine Intervention. It's Job with a happier ending, but the same unsettling questions about how we interact with God, and how God can interact with us.
Roxanne asked about evil. I'll tell you now, at the beginning, to save you time if you thought I was going to be able to answer this question: I don't know how to answer this question. I don't know what to do about evil.
But we were gentle among you.1 Thess 2:7 For you yourselves have been taught by God to love one another; and indeed you do love all the brothers and sisters throughout Macedonia. But we urge you, beloved, to do so more and more.1 Thess 4:9-10 So then let us not die as others do, but… Continue reading The Good Parts: 1 Thessalonians
There's nothing that will ever make me stop loving Fosco. L i t e r a l l y nothing. He has pooped on the bathroom floor on ::more:: than one occasion, often out of spite, and Zach would only get maybe TWO accidents like that. There are conditions to unconditional love.
I approach religion as something I want to live with (and you will say, "No, I get it, but why?"), and you approach it as something you want to make sense of.
What does it mean to find something good? I hadn’t even really thought about that question at all until I realized there are three places where God isn’t pleased. Not angry, necessarily, but not announcing that “it was good” either.
We have a chance to read this passage differently, this order out of chaos. We’re left, maybe, with creation out of something: out of the wild and waste. Out of Ocean. Out of whatever darkness is. We have to be willing to read with new eyes.
Why isn't our need a gift for those who have? Why are we unwilling to be humble and accept grace and charity? Why do we only feel as if we can give if we have extra, when what is expected is that we'll give because it is needed. How will you work out this moral calculus?