Saturday, December 3, 2011

Moment of Waking-December 3, 2011- I woke up today with a question swirling in my thoughts: What is it the separates the human animal from the rest of the animal kingdom? Opposable thumbs? The ability to reason on a higher plane? The ability to create and destroy? I eventually came up with two things: our propensity to be cruel, and our ability to love beyond reason. I am not aware of any other animal that causes another pain intentionally, just for the sake of doing it. Of course, you can always point out causal factors: rage, hurt, grief, hate, fear, but since when does correlation equal causation? Humans have been at war with each other since the beginning of time, with a multitude of reasons as to why: land, money, religion, resources, but could it be that it is just in our nature? Maybe even in our DNA? What about emotional pain? To break another persons spirit? To be unable to empathize? When I travel down these dark roads, I choose not to stay long. I always come back to the same thought, my son. Having a child gave love an entirely different definition for me. Sure, in my life, I have loved and do love many people and animals as well. But all of that pales in comparison to the overwhelming love that I felt when I held my baby boy for the first time, and ever since. Other animals care for their young, but is that only biologically driven? The need to continue your own species is, of course, not a uniquely human trait, it belongs to even the microorganisms, conscious or not. But that is another rabbit hole. My point is, what makes us love beyond what we think we are capable of? To love unconditionally? I do not have the answer, but I sure do have the reason, anyway. What would our world be like if we could apply a fraction of that pure love to other aspects of our lives, to other relationships, even a brief exchange with a stranger, or with our planet? Certainly some people do. When I can be conscious of how my words, my actions, affect others, I am acting out of love. When I can move beyond my own selfishness, that is. When I can take myself out of my own tiny little world for a bit. But my son is the only one I have never had that struggle with, it comes naturally, it just is. And I am beyond grateful for that. Especially during the hardest times of my life: when my mother committed suicide, and now, having made a decision to divorce. It enables me to get out of bed when I think it impossible. To smile when my heart is broken. To give love when all I feel is pain. Of course, it could be argued that it does not make me totally selfless, because my decision has inflicted pain on my son. Another rabbit hole, one I cannot go down. I suppose that, at heart, I am an optimist-I will continue to believe in love. I will choose to believe that this too shall pass. Because of my son, and for him, and for all he has taught me about unconditional love, and the unconditional love he gives me. Anyway, those are the thoughts I woke up with, layered within this song. Speaking of love....Muse.

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