Just Passing Through

Bladerrunner dying scene
August 2009
Given I’ve spent 48 years inputting into my mind and experience it stands to reason that having discovered the outlet of blogging I may have a lot to get out of my system initially. In an attempt to not burn myself out on blogging I will strive to exercise moderation in this endeavor.

Technical note… Each time I blog I’ll attempt to offer a link to some lagniappe (a little something extra for free)… this way you can read something written by someone more interesting than me before reading my blog.

Lagniappe: The Self Thinking Thought- Happy days is a great blog… this article addresses that sublimest of proofs… the ontological argument.
http://happydays.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/08/23/the-self-thinking-thought/

At work we have a game going in which folks list their favorite movies by genre and then coworkers try to guess who the person is based on the movies. My list was posted this week. Some of the movies on my list included: Gattaca; Lawrence of Arabia; The Purple Rose of Cairo; Vertigo.

I’ve always loved the movies. My father is a movie lover and I have fond memories of seeing and discussing movies with him. When you step into the darkness of the movie theater with a crowd of fellow humans it is an embryonic/transcendent like experience. As a group you step out of reality into a story in the darkness of the theater. I love Walker Percy’s musings on “the re-entry problem” of disengaging from a movie and returning to our life.

In thinking about my favorite movies I realized that they share a major theme- doing the impossible. Lawrence crossing the Nefu desert. The impaired brother in Gattaca making the space program. The actor in Purple Rose stepping out of the movie and into real life in response to Mia Farrow’s adoration of him. The notion of doing what is not possible inspires me.

I attribute it to the genetic predisposition I think we all have to not find full satisfaction in this life. In “The End of Christendom” Malcolm Muggeridge talks about how we are not designed/programmed to find satisfaction in this life. C.S. Lewis talks about how this life is simply preparation for the next one.

I think of that final scene in Bladerunner in which the android recounts the multitude of fascinating experiences he has had and puzzles over the notion that what he is and has become will disappear with the ending of his existence. Each of us can say the same. It makes no sense that we would spend a lifetime of becoming only to cease to be.

This is why I tend to think that we are all just passing through.

For a fun movie version of this perspective check out Defending Your Life.

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