Perspective Ramblings: The Fall Of Man
I have watched, over the few years I’ve been alive, the suffering people go through. And often, to often if I may say so, I’ve found myself wondering what’s the point. Why do people get sick? Why do people suffer at the hands of other people….abuses so numerous that it would take to many blogs to list. Why do people wither away slowly, only to find their last moments engulfed in an unending fear of the unknown?
I’ve watched as men have risen to astounding heights. I’ve watched technological marvels, one after another in succession, parade across the world stage…making life that much easier for those who can afford it. I’ve watched as friends and loved ones found passionate love…and in turn…a modicum of joy in their lives.
By: Mark Wilkinson
And at the same time as all of those great and marvelous things, I’ve watched atrocities beyond belief. I’ve seen men of great potential stumble and fall. I’ve seen women of unending strength collapse in on themselves, because of the burdens they bear. I’ve seen so many brought to the end of their days, before their time.
The fall of man, which seems such an esoteric idea….one that is far fetched, far removed and oft times associated with war, famine, pestilence, and death, is closer than we imagine. It’s violent and chaotic potential resides beneath a thin layer of order we weave for ourselves in order to substantiate our sense of security.
A job equates to security because it means one has money to pay for a home, food, and other necessities of life. An education equates to better job opportunities which means the potential for higher income…which means better homes, food, and a higher standard of living. Marriage equates to a certain kind of security, all its own, in that one does not have to face the world alone and with the additional income, one can concentrate on having a family or enjoying life more.
All of these things have purpose, important purpose at that, if one wishes to survive in this world in any kind of comfort. But they do nothing in helping us cope with the onslaught of things which can cause us to crumple to our knees and surrender. They merely postpone the inevitable by distracting us from facing what lays just beneath the surface of our ordered and patterned lives.
That inevitable realization is that Hell really does exist on Earth. And it resides in the hearts of every man and woman alive. It is the place we all fear to tread. It is a place inside us where we hide our shame, our embarrassment, our guilt, our fears, our insecurities, and our true feelings. And it is a place that can be visited upon us because of life changing events, inconsequential things, or for no reason at all.
The only thing that needs to happen is for that thin layer of security to crack just a little. You lose your job. You get a divorce. You become the victim of a violent crime. You get told, by someone, that you don’t measure up in some way. From the worst things in life to the most mundane, these things have a way of working their way into your psyche, past your defenses, and affecting you at the deepest levels.
It leaves one feeling as though they are the only person in the world….so alone…so empty…..so broken….so removed from everyone else that no one can touch you, much less understand your suffering. And it hurts so much that it wells up like a fist in your chest that claws at your insides and pounds at your walls, demanding to not only be heard, but to be acknowledged. It brings you to your knees because it is so palpable. It grips your insides, making it hard to catch your breath, as panic floods your body with no where to run.
And even as these feelings ebb and flow, rising and churning like waves in the ocean, they cling to you as you go about your daily life. They are a daily reminder of what hangs over your head. This is, in one form or another, depression…..a morose sadness which enshrouds your life…everything that you do and say. It mars and stunts all moments of potential happiness and edges them in shades of gray. So it is difficult to offer up genuine happiness without effort and a definitive smile without forcing it.
This goes on until finally all your body, mind, and soul cries out for is an end to the pain….an end to the suffering…and an end to this existence……
The hardest thing, I believe, is the struggle to stand up again and start moving forward. People often times believe that the hardest part is the fall into depression and the potential for ending one’s life. But the fall, despite its hardships, is the easy part, in reality. The hardest part comes with the decision to stay alive, struggle forward and go on living. Each step forward is hard won, because of the hardship it is to take that one step forward at a time, particularly when everything inside you cries out to stop, give up, and let go of the pain. The hardest part in all of this…is living. And it’s an ever present battle uphill….but what a beautiful battle it is.