Friday, September 21, 2012

Studia Humanitas.

In the desert
I saw a creature, naked, bestial,
who, squatting upon the ground,
Held his heart in his hands,
And ate of it.
I said, "Is it good, friend?"
"It is bitter--bitter," he answered;
"But I like it
Because it is bitter,
And because it is my heart."
Stephen Crane

I think the thing that bothers me most about my life
is that I'm mortal.

Casper David Friedrich

No really.

It's something that I can't accept,
because it feels so limiting.

I feel like I'm made of greater stuff than that.

I should be able to pick up French again,
perfect Greek,
start German,
and dabble in Latin.

I should be able to get another degree in history teaching
and another in humanities
and another in American studies
and then go to law school.

Why don't I know the history of labor unions?

Why can't I be an expert on 
every case that went to the Supreme Court
and why haven't I read 
the hundred most influential books of all time?

When will I know the story of the Irish Republican Brotherhood
and when will I celebrate the national day 
of each country in the world?

I should know how to play the harmonica.
I should see Casablanca.
I should memorize etymologies.

I want to know everything.

Everything about mankind and the human condition.
About what they did and what they thought and what they made.

There is something so godly about being a human being.

I want to know everything,
because down to my living, breathing guts
I am a human.

Which also happens to make me feel so frustratingly limited.

I look forward to the day when I will burst my limitations
and learn everything
and become like God.

Being mortal is like tasting a bit of being godly


  1. Rachel, you inspire me! You always have. You always will. I am glad that we share a love for learning. One day we will burst our limitations together!

  2. Well said, my friend. I know the feeling. More than anything, I can't wait to be perfect. When will I finally banish fear from my heart forever more and only live in faith? When is the funeral for my worry? When can I stop agonizing over every decision and feeling? When will I be free?