"Your body is the first thing any child of man ever wanted. Therefore dispose yourself to be loved, to be wanted, to be available. Be there for them with a vengeance. Be a gracious, bending woman. Incline your ear, your heart, your hands to them.... To be a Mother is to be the sacrament - the effective symbol - of place. Mothers do not make homes, they are our home." from Bed and Board, Robert Farrar Capon

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Lucidity, Where Art Thou?

"Human intellect is incurably abstract....
Yet the only realities we experience are concrete - this pain, this pleasure, this dog, this man.
When we are loving the man, bearing the pain, enjoying the pleasure, 
we are not intellectually apprehending Pleasure, Pain, or Personality.... 
This is our dilemma - either to taste and not to know or to know and not to taste - 
or, more strictly to lack one kind of knowledge because we are in an experience 
or to lack another kind because we are outside it.

As thinkers we are cut off from what we think about;
as tasting, touching, willing, loving, hating, we do not clearly understand.
The more lucidly we think, the more we are cut off:
the more deeply we enter into reality, the less we can think."

Myth Became Fact, C. S. Lewis  (reprinted in God in the Dock)

Gerrit Dou, Girl Chopping Onions, 1646

Hey, wild-eyed lady in the painting, surely that's a perfect time to think, right?  
I mean, you're just chopping onions? What's so hard about that? 
Well (apart from the flood of tears and smeared mascara that would grace my face at such a time) there's also the little boy, saying, "Mom? Mom? Could I have this onion for an experiment?"
And then you try to think. You try. Can he? What experiment?  I don't like experiments. Why does he make me have to think about this right now, when I'm getting ready to instruct the little person setting the table about which side to put the fork on, for the tenth time. And listening to that same wrong piano note from the other room. Can he? Think... think.


  1. It sounds like all the little people around you that you've been given have forced you into deeper reality and less thinking than you could ver force yourself.
    What a gracious God we have.
    Bless you,
    Grace K

  2. That's good ! That's funny!
    I never knew there was a limit to how many things a mom can think about at one time.
    But I think I've hit it.

  3. The look on her face is priceless. And, Yes, Tricia has joined our club. It's the "wait--what exactly are you asking me?" club. And I recognize myself in that look. The next look is where I close my eyes and try real hard to concentrate on that one question. I usually need them to repeat it very slowly.

  4. oh I needed this today! Thinking... how I miss thee!
    But reality is good too. Even better, bouncing back and forth between the two. :)