[Some of what we teach—and learn—in homeschooling is a lifetime lesson. This is one of them—perhaps the most important that we can start to teach our children when they are still growing into manhood and womanhood:]
To figure out the grand mystery of life there are only two starting points. One must either defer to an external and eternal God or throw out the one true God and make a god, internally, of oneself. Descartes’ statement “I think therefore I AM,” showed that he preferred himself as a god. And many have followed him, plunging themselves into an insupportable dichotomy, as we shall see.
If one chooses to throw out the external God, replacing Him with oneself, instead of emerging emancipated from all responsibility, as he had anticipated, he now is immediately faced with the heavy burden of re-writing origins and realities. Everything is up for grabs. All boundaries slush around; all realities must be dredged up from the face of the deep. For such a man, the earth is again “without form and void.” Re-writes become his new raison d’être—and eventually his prison.
Am I a man or a woman? Am I black or white—merely by my own assertions? Are laws, laws? or suggestions? or are they just obstacles in my way? Can I only be married to one person? Seriously? I’ll have them all, even if they fight and scratch each other. Do words mean what they have meant historically or are they malleable in the eyes of the beholder, meaning whatever I want them to mean, in this case, and something different in the next case—according to my own advantage? Such a person’s swim is a deep dive into an abyss. Assuredly, he will face rapids and whirlpools.
The descent into his overwhelming burden does not stop there. A man will be faced with rewriting reality, not only allegedly to somehow make sense of things to himself, but also to authenticate an indulgence or two (his own, ever shifting and ever more) or to assuage a guilt (a mincing deviance from the old order, which lingers with him still, and then a larger one here and there—as he gets pulled further and further from his actual roots).
Bewilderingly, he soon finds that his re-written realities—oops, grown at cross purposes—have implications that he hadn’t anticipated, can’t reconcile and won’t work in the real world that he was born into. His new world will eventually surround him with insanity; it is bound to run amuck.
Even then, his burden doesn’t stop. He will now chase around after an exploration of his own angst for the rest of his life. Without absolute answers, absolute realities, life has become an exploration of personal angst. That is the “heroic” new narrative. It is, however, only another tale of “The Emperor’s New Clothes”—claiming to be the ultimate reason for life, for winning a place on the bestsellers page, putting pen to paper in a new sophistication—it is nothing. “I’m contorted; where do I run?”
This new modern perspective, “I am because I am,” flatters the individual into thinking his struggle is unique think our struggle is unique, unusual, individual, highly intellectual—aristocratic—needs my own solutions to relieve my own pain—needs new discourse. But as in the case of a man torn in the dilemma of choosing between his career and raising his own children—if someone were to wake him up, he embarrassingly discovers it is every man’s dilemma and it is never an “either-or”. This “either/or” dichotomy is a trap—a mirage.
The answer is to put God back into His story and then go humbly ahead with Him as one’s escort into all human dilemmas (of which the dilemma before him now, that seems insurmountable, and is all consuming, is merely the beginning). God designed life with its apparent dilemmas, a myriad of them. And the Almighty has a passage through them. But God will be God, first. A mere man will eventually discover that he makes a poor god—by his own self-made contortions.