Matt W Cook

writer.former fundamentalist.christianly fellow

Tag: living

Gulping Life

I go to bed with a shot of Dr. Mcgillicuddy’s Peach Schnapps. Ever tried it? I don’t know much about liquor, but I know I like it. It’s smooth and bursting with sharp peachy juiciness. It’s always a little sad when the glass is empty.

I tried making it last longer the other day. Instead of taking my shot and letting it go its merry way down my gullet, I held it in my mouth to prolong the pleasure. It didn’t work, of course. It quickly turned harsh. It wasn’t a pleasure that was meant to be prolonged.

This is a picture of a cat.

This is a picture of a cat.

Do you remember how much you loved juice (and life) as a kid? There is no passion in the world greater than a child’s passion for juice (and life). Juice (and life) gave you an exhilaration that made you believe everything was right with the universe. And when you got your tiny hands on that massive glass of deep purple, you gulped it as fast as you could, relishing the holistic sensation as the precious liquid rolled down your throat. But, inevitably, someone much taller than you would come by, notice all that fun you were having, and tell you to knock it off.

“Slow down and enjoy it!” they would tell you, as if you weren’t already in the raptures of juicy bliss. “You can’t even taste it!”

Of course I can taste it! But taste isn’t even the foundation of the joy of juice (or life). It’s the wild abandon of gulping. It’s the excitement of consumption. There is a hidden passion in the purple stuff. But adults don’t get that. They forgot that juice (and life) is meant to be gulped.

And when you forget a pleasure, the most annoying thing is to watch someone else remembering it. That’s why kids aren’t allowed to gulp. That’s why kids aren’t allowed to sing in public or be loud or laugh at crude jokes. Not appropriate. Bad deportment. Get in line, wipe that grin off your face and be serious, because somehow seriousness is better than levity.

Let us roll all our strength, and all
Our sweetness, up into one ball;
And tear our pleasures with rough strife
Thorough the iron gates of life.
Thus, though we cannot make our sun
Stand still, yet we will make him run.

– Andrew Marvell, To His Coy Mistress

Wisdom’s Bastard Children

We criticize folks from other religions and denominations and wordviews when they have our favourite beliefs wrong.

When those people live better than us and the rest of our tribe, we mourn that they look like they understand things better than us.

But, in some direly important ways, they do understand better than us.

Because wisdom is justified by all her children.

Your Life is a Story

Source: xkcd

     Your life is a story.

     Is it boring?
Would it make the Reader yawn and want to skip pages just to get to the end?

     Is it irrelevant?
Would it make the Reader wonder why he bought the book in the first place?

     Is it selfish?
Would it annoy the Reader with its blatant narcissism?

Or

     Is it heroic?
Would it make the Reader cheer as you go about your quests for justice?

     Is it authentic?
Would it make the Reader look at his own heart to see if he is living an honest life, like you are?

     Is it lovely?
Would the Reader smile with joy as he seems the world in the shining light that you see it in?

     Is it important?
Would it change the Reader and make his world a better place?

     Everyone you meet is a Reader. Do they believe your story?

Steve Jobs on Death

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

Steve Jobs, 1955-2011

Short Story – The Sodomite

This is a new one. I’ve been wanting to write it for a while but was never really able to make it work until just now. And I think it works now. It’s a bit of an exercise in trying to understand myself and my thoughts about life, Jesus and everything good. I was raised in a very conservative religious environment and have been moving toward something different over the past few years. The Sodomite is a bit of a parody of some very popular modern Christian parables linking the idea of substitutional atonement with a judge condemning a guilty crook and then serving his sentence. Anyway, enjoy it and pass it alone!