For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.

- Mosiah 3:19

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Help from The Chemical Brothers

I think I'm addicted to melancholy; it seems that melancholy, at times, can lead to, nay even fuel, creativity, serious reflection, even profound reflexivity. I think I take great pleasure in melancholy: it allows me to focus on the things of my soul, the deep things of my life, to work out the things that weigh heavy on my conscious and on my soul. It allows me to pierce through the lies I tell myself, it allows me to see me.

Yet, there has to be another way to examine my life than to get there through artificial and deadly means, as I have hitherto done. I talked with a friend yesterday about my life and I realized that I'm afraid of moving forward. I'm afraid of progressing because I don't know what that progress will do for me, nor do I know what the outcome will look like.

I labored over this during the winter break and ended up "acting out" with several people. Fear of the unknown catapults me into my addiction; it agitates it. As I tried to face my fear in the eyes and not blink, it was far to heavy for me. I broke down and lost it. I fear what I will become if I unite myself with the church; I fear what I will become if I but simply put more energy into my work; I fear where I will be if I stop resisting God. But I blinked. I gave way to a series of unhealthy encounters that left me exhausted mentally, nearly spiritually extinct, and emotionally spent. Yesterday another friend (at my recovery meeting) explained that we try to "act out" the things we desire most. As I reflected on my encounters recently and from the beginning they were all attempts to establish a connection, an attempt to fill the yearning for completion, an attempt to fill the hole in my soul. I acted out with these men to try to make me whole, to make me feel lovable, to make me feel connected from the world - the irony is that these encounters only disconnected me from more of the things I value and treasure. As a result I feel somewhat lost and confused.

There's a song by the Chemical Brothers that has oddly provided me with some hope, weird, I know:

As I walked along
The supposed golden path
I was confronted
By a mysterious specter
he pointed to the graveyard
over on yonder hill
I paused in cosmic reflection
confused and wondering.
Of how I came to die to die...
Hmmm I was confused
For if I was dead
how and why did I die?
but I composed myself
and decided I should face him
But I stood paralyzed
on the supposed golden path.
and I was confronted
by a powerful demon force
and they said it was the devil
and when he spoke his words flowed like glowing lava
from the mouth of a volcano
and I said help me lord
I found myself in some kind of hell
but I did not believe in a
Heaven and hell world of opposite’s kind of reality
and I gained control of myself
and I decided to press on
and as I walked along the supposed golden path
I was trembling with fear all the lions and wizards yet to come.
I seen in the distance silver mountains rising high and the clouds
and voice from above did whisper some shining answer from the womb.
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you
As I walked along
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you
As I walked along
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you
Please forgive me I never meant to hurt you

I'm not sure why but the chemical brothers have given me pause to reflect on my lamentable state.

But it's a new year. The missionaries have been coming over and meeting with me again. Their determination in saving my soul is commendable. They came over on Sunday and talked with me at length about striving to have simple faith in God. What surprised me about that interaction was the amount of resistance I had to their message. I arrested that resistance, as much as I could, and chose to simply give way to their message. I wish I could say that was a singular moment that I could look back on that changed my life, but it wasn't. It was forced, it took great effort, it was messy.

Before they left they committed me, after my sheer discomfort at the idea of making any commitment to read scriptures, pray and attend church. I was surprised again at my level of resistance, yet despite everything inside of me not wanting to make a commitment, I did. It's not that I don't read scriptures or prayer, rather the idea was committing to do so with an express purpose of coming to Christ.

My relationship with scriptures has been more like a morning meditation to clear my mind, not with purpose to bring me closer to God. Again, I wish I could report it was an ineffable moment, but it was wasn't: rather it was mundane and again quite messy. They left me with a commitment, really to help me build simple faith in God. Yesterday I talked to my sponsor (a gay atheist) who committed me to pray and to find contentment in my path. He seems to always complement the missionary message - Odd!

I've been sober since Sunday. I'm not sure if that is a blessing of the commitment, which I have honored, or if it's simply a cycle. But my sponsor asked me to look for the miracles, no matter how small or insignificant they may be, and allow that to fuel my trust in the Divine.

And so I try.

1 comment:

  1. That's a fascinating thought about being addicted to melancholy. I think I've felt that way before: where you absolutely hate being depressed, but the little demon of depression keeps you company, so you hate even more the idea of leaving it behind. We kind of have to reason ourselves out of that situation to remember that choosing happiness and optimism, though undesirable for now, will in the long run be obviously better.

    Hang in there.

    My best,