21 August 2009

A Monstrous Future

I don't mean to seem utterly down on American culture. I believe my country to be one of the utmost importance to the future of the world, and one that has been given a part of inestimable value to play in that future. But right now the whole world, the entire earth is crying from the depths of its pain for an America that is quieter and humbler than probably anything we've ever known. We all need this transformation. Mexico needs it, China needs it, Europe and India and Arabia need it. We all need an America that is quiet and humble enough to see the visible creatures of God - whoever and whatever they may be - for what they are, and not just for what we can fashion them into. We need to see once again the lighter, more delicate presence of God at work and at play in the world, and not just the rather more brutally unmistakable evidence of ourselves.

Or else - what? We can further bury ourselves in matters and things more manipulable to us - things of which we seem to be the gods, and which make us feel like gods. We can continue in our present role of playing Dr Frankenstein to a monstrous new world - our dazzling tour de force of global dissection and reassemblage. Imagine the adventure of living in a thoroughly modern, prefabricated human world! A world, not of places and peoples that arose "naturally" or historically, but one consisting entirely of a scrapheap of human cultures welded into a design, manufacture, and efficiency of our own choosing . . .

A fascinating experiment, no? And then, down the road, we'll have the further opportunity of seeing how well and how long the monster obeys - or even tolerates - its creator. The choice, as we Americans like to say, is ours.

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