Saturday, September 4, 2010

Desperate Search: Quantifying the Rest of the Story

 "And he that sat upon the throne said, 'Behold, I make all things new.' And he said unto me, 'Write: for these words are true and faithful.'"
Revelation 21:5*

I referenced the omnibus that is H.P. Lovecraft's work before.  This led to a few more stumbles down the wiki-rabbit hole.  The subsequent result was the finding of a certain 'ism'.  Bear through this.

Cosmicism (according to wikipedia):

"...there is no recognizable divine presence, such as God, in the universe, humans are particularly insignificant in the larger scheme of intergalactic existence, and perhaps are just a small species projecting their own mental idolatries onto the vast cosmos, ever susceptible to being wiped from existence at any moment... the majority of undiscerning humanity are creatures with the same significance as insects in a much greater struggle between greater forces which, due to humanity's small, visionless and unimportant nature, it does not recognize... it is not so much the absence of meaning that causes terror as it is the discovery that (we) have absolutely no power to effect any change in the vast, indifferent, and ultimately incomprehensible universe that surrounds (us)."

Man is created in God's image.  And then Adam sinned.  Perversion entered mankind.  Sin is that which separates man from God.  Sin is the void between.  The space.  The static.

We humans are not bits of nothingness.  We are not just static.  We have stuff in us.  Lots of stuff.  Perhaps an appropriate expression of sin is to say that it is the twisting, the perverting, the misrepresentation of that which is in us; "Spared no expense."  

If we take this hypothesis, if we choose to put on a lens that sees all of our compartments as such, then what is needed is never the complete ripping away of vice, but rather, the redemption of those variables that have been caused to morph in appearance by that twisting perversion.  Redeem the body by the extraction of the static in the being.  What I am proselytizing is the removal of the perverse static within the true idea-form.  This all sounds very lofty and pretentious, but I've a simple point.

Something in me wants to use cosmicism.  Though it patently denies the goodness of God, is there not even a snippet of truth there?  What would a redeemed view of cosmicism look like?  Can it be redeemed?  Is there an image of God in cosmicism?  I say there is.

With this discussion arises the kernel debate.  Does there exist a kernel of truth within every idea?  If so, are we capable of mining the truth out of it?

This is what I see: one of the Church's struggles in this modern era (Church with Big 'C'), is that we don't properly examine the Awe of God.  Remember how often the Old Testament writers call the reader to meditate on a healthy Fear of the Lord.  Recall Isaiah, "At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke." Isaiah 6:4**

In our strength and confidence of innovation, our tendency is to make God small.  We like to know God in such a way that we can handle Him.  We can't handle Him.  He is too much.  We are too little.
Charles Williams, in his novel Descent into Hell speaks of a terrible good.  It is that which is so vast, so mighty, so unfathomable, that fear is the only appropriate response.  Think of Isaiah's reaction when he witnesses the train of God's robe filling the temple.  His instinct is to cry out -- to scream, "Woe to me! I am ruined!"**  Another Inkling, the magnanimous C.S. Lewis, is famous for the quote, "He is not a tame lion."  Here the lion, Aslan, the Savior of Narnia, is still portrayed as mysterious.  This enigma comes through Aslan's infinite knowledge, a knowledge that surpasses beyond the measure of man's judgment.  The result is a sense of unpredictability.

Remember: we must rest in God's promises.  He has assured us that He has paid for our debts.  He will not destroy us.  He has promised His love, and with it, sweet grace and mercy.  But we should not be quick to let these wonderful attributes of God's character dwarf our perception of His power.  He is mighty beyond comprehension.  And He always keeps His promises.

In that first paragraph of The Call of Cthulhu, H.P. Lovecraft calls revelation a deadly light.  Could that deadly light be the same stuff that was named a terrible good?  I agree with a large portion of cosmicism's aim: we humans are insignificant.  In order to have an appropriate self-image, we need to, as a civilization, obtain a healthy understanding of this truth.  Scientific discoveries have altered the way we live.  This is true, but science and technology, by no means, have figured out what this world is.  The galaxy is still an incomprehensibly vast mystery.  We will never know its depths.  We cannot fathom it because we cannot truly fathom God, the Creator.

John 1:5 and 18 speaks of Jesus Christ as the Light to the world; "The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it...  No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known."**

I see Cthulhu and the other Lovecraftian monstrosities as something terrible.  These inconceivable creatures taunted Lovecraft, for they echoed a reality that he could only transcribe as a deadly light.  For him, with the revelation of light comes the proclamation of death.  This is true, for our God is not a tame God.  His revelation reveals our smallness and our wickedness.  When I see that light, I am forced to acknowledge that, "I am ruined!"  But then grace floods my soul, and I see that which was just terrible as a terrible good.

Is this an agreeable hypothesis -- that all ideas can be salvaged -- that all thought was birthed from a mind that was made to reflect the Good One -- that because we were granted the image of God in our soul, every created idea can be redeemed? 

What else?  What next?

 *King James Version
**New International Version

No comments:

Post a Comment