Here I am, a vegetable, a victim of a society gone berserk, a man imprisoned in a cell that is stronger than any iron bars or concrete walls, the last dribble of scum from a cesspool that has existed for a million years, desolation within overcrowding, emptiness within fullness, chaos within order, death within life, pork within sausage, heartburn within the next half-hour.
These are the things that plague every one of us. They are here, yet they are there. They are within our own psyches, yet they exist in the remotest part of the cosmos. They have also been reported in Cleveland.
But what of these elusive things? Are they, as Descartes once said, the greatest of all challenges for the greatest of men, or are they, as Jesus said in the New Testament, the ultimate test for a human being on this earth before ascending (or descending!) to the hereafter.
It may be that neither of these views exactly capture the essence of the assertion. It may very well be that neither of these explanations even comes close to the true meaning of the stated condition. It may be that I, as the author of this essay, do not have the slightest idea about that which I write.
Could it be that this condition of mine was predetermined by the fact I was born into a world where young men live, old men die, and margarine has only fifteen percent of the saturated fat of real butter?
These profundities have been around for a very long time. In fact, they have existed longer than the clock has, so no one can really say just how long they have existed. For that matter, nobody can say how long the word "exist" has existed. For, without the word "exist" and the plenitude of commas, the verbosity and ambiguity of philosophers and college students would not be at all possible.
At this point, we must admit to the existence of reality, the nonexistence of non-reality, the trueness of all truth, the falseness of all untruth, and the all-encompassing existence of saccharine in Diet Pepsi.
Need I say more? I believe I do. But not today. Possibly never. This last point may be the reason why we will always need to say more. Simply put, neverness is the very driving force behind needing to move ahead forever. At the same time, foreverness can preclude us from ever doing anything again.
With this thought, I will leave you until another day, or maybe even another life. Be happy, be healthy, and, most important of all, avoid the temptation.
Keith W. Morrow
Keith W. Morrow lives and writes in Salem, Oregon, where he read about The Ecphorizer in Oregon Mensa's magazine, Omen.
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