Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Here's a sample passage by anthropologist and naturalist Loren Eiseley. It's from his essay called "The Hidden Teacher":
. . . I once received an unexpected lesson from a spider. It happened far away on a rainy morning in the West. I  had come up a long gulch looking for fossils, and there, just at eye level, lurked a huge yellow-and-black orb spider, whose web was moored to the tall spears of buffalo grass at the edge of the arroyo. It was her universe, and her senses did not extend beyond the lines and spokes of the great wheel she inhabited. Her extended claws could feel every vibration throughout that delicate structure. She knew the tug of wind, the fall of a raindrop, the flutter of a trapped moth's wing. Down one spoke of the web ran a stout ribbon of gossamer on which she could hurry out to investigate her prey.
Curious, I took a pencil from my pocket and touched a strand of the web. Immediately there was a response. The web, plucked by its menacing occupant, began to vibrate until it was a blur. Anything that had brushed claw or wing against that amazing snare would be thoroughly entrapped. As the vibrations slowed, I could see the owner fingering her guidelines for signs of struggle. A pencil point was an intrusion into this universe for which no precedent existed. Spider was circumscribed by spider ideas; its universe was spider universe. All outside was irrational, extraneous, at best raw material for spider. As I proceeded on my way along the gully, like a vast impossible shadow, I realized that in the world of spider I did not exist.


This is how a lot of people treat God, even though he steps in multiple time in their lives, they ignore him and denounce the idea of him as irrational, extraneous, at best a man-made idea, wrought in order to bring order and peace to a world full of absurdity. They rarely seem to consider the possibility that we could also be like spiders aware only of our own world until we add up the occurences in our and others lives and begin to wonder about the why and how.
Fortunately for us God is not like the human in the short story. He has the ability and the desire to communicate with us and give us a picture of who He is. Not only that but He became one of us to show that He is there there is meaning to life, there is something--Someone--outside of ourselves.