Saturday, September 16, 2006


THE POINT OF EVOLUTION


The point of evolution, it seems to me waiting for the train in the morning rain, is not to get me to the office on time; nor does it seem to consist in my sitting at a desk all day, seeking ever higher income until I outgo.

In terms of the big picture, I mean the BIG picture, infinitely bigger than the largest font in any word processing software that will ever be created, there is of course no point at all to what we call evolution; it all merely IS (same unattainable font, only bolder). Locally speaking, however, necessarily whence I ramble, if there is a site-specific point to evolution it must be relevant to us humans right here and now, must it not, for if it isn't, then what's the point, is I guess the point.

Some say there's a heaven to which we'll go if we stick to one of the many creeds said to be worth dying/killing for; then we can be with goodness forever and/or 27 virgins (or raisins, depending on the reading), together with all our relatives and friends and everybody, but that doesn't seem like much of an incentive because although I would greatly look forward to meeting certain folks again, I'm not sure how many I'd want to spend forever with, or they with me. And there are so many costly yet oversold blisses along the way to that gate are there not, most of the best ones detrimental or even criminal, all of them short-term, a few decades at most. (I'm not being cynical; just roughly sketching the teleological big picture here.)

But then heaven on earth as it is in heaven is neither here nor there, for belief in anything written by an uncertain number of apochryphal anchorites is not necessarily the way to paradise, which is I suppose why each of the famously conflicting creeds came up with the buffer idea that god required multiple secretaries. There's a good chance that bacteria have a better belief system, with a more a propos heaven.

The point of evolution then, locally speaking as it seems to me, must be something much better than a heaven that can be flogged in a book, it must be a heaven (same font that surrounds the stars) in which there are native animals and plants, but no commuters, no managers, no received ideas, and where utter believers have been left behind.

There are a wealth of signs in this life that there is already a genuine, warm and welcoming heaven somewhere in ourselves, as we can see in our children and in the eyes of those we love, as we can feel in our own hearts at such moments, moments naturally free from the restraints of belief, moments that rise like a spring from the ground of our being.

The "lower" forms of life and non-life around us have not been vouchsafed the "privilege" of pondering these things, or of having the perks that go with such ponderance, i. e., higher salaries, ethical quandaries, pensions, mcmansions or lamentations of transience; they simply go about their lives, which must be heaven, and which is what I would like to do actually, even moreso than I'm doing right now on the train platform, but then the question for each becomes how, and what is a life and am I wasting mine or is it even mine, for a life as purely natural as those of the flora and fauna isn't available to homo sapiens, and perhaps never was; likely as not it went out the window when sapience burgled in with its sack of guilt and questions.

We blessed with this paradox have spent millennia trying to unravel it, or at least tie up the loose ends, coming up with all sorts of exclusive gordian knotways to bliss/illumination/paradise, of which the commuter train now pulling in is definitely not one. Before I board, just let me say that sure, all the prophets went into the wilderness, but they all came back out bearing tenets to die/kill for, which true believers are doing right and left even today. And look at what's happening to the wilderness.

One thing I'm sure of: truth will be victorious.

4 comments:

Maya's Granny said...

Robert,
The things we ponder as we wander -- there is something about long walks and waiting for trains and commuting places that leads to thoughts like these. And how wonderful that is.
Although, it would be nice to just be, to live in the here and now and not be concerned with the there and then.

Winston said...

You speaketh the truth, Robert...
So let it be said. So let it be done.

Joy Des Jardins said...

I've frequently had onslaughts of these re-evaluation moments Robert. What does it all mean? Where do I stand? Why does it make a difference? I suspect I'll continue to have them, and continue to ask myself questions that I never seem to have an answer for. I guess that's part of the evolution of life as we homo sapiens know it. The flora and fauna have a cake walk in comparison.

Trace said...

You thoughts are well spoken and worthy. Pondering can be healthy for a time. However, I agree with joy des jardins as she stated, "The fora and fauna have a cakewalk in comparison." Questions unanswered, remain ever mysterious. I love a mystery; I suspect most of us do, truth be known. My ponderings and philosophies of this life, keep me wanting to remain; at least, within one universe, that I may know someday--the ultimate truth of it all.