Saturday, February 23, 2013

Return To An Old Friend

I just informed my wife that I've fallen back in love.

David Dark is an incredible thinker and writer. My first encounter with him was when I bought his latest book because I was captivated by the title: The Sacredness of Questioning Everything. After I devoured that one I ordered his other two books. I quickly finished his first book, Everyday Apocalypse (which I quoted on my blog a few years ago), but then I shelved his second book, The Gospel According to America. If I liked him so much, why wouldn't I go right to the third? Because, unfortunately, life just doesn't work that way. No disrespect to Mr. Dark, but I had other pressing concerns (I'm assuming here, I don't actually remember).

That, and I have this other little mechanism that I've put in place. Sometimes I'll binge on an author, and it becomes easy to think that everything they're saying is the gospel truth. Because of this tendency of mine to be so swayed, I've found it helpful to back off the author and read someone else that could be considered a "balance" to the former. I think it's a good method that helps temper my passions and opinions.

But I could resist The Gospel . . . no longer--and boy is it ever a happy return. I've just finished the introduction, and through it I was reminded of all the things Dark gifted me with. Reading that first book was truly a mind altering drug. He expanded my sphere of consciousness, gave me permission to question myself and everything more, challenged me to consider the damage I am willing to do to others in my thought life. And that's just scraping the surface, of course.

So here is a gem from the intro:

"Politics is how we govern ourselves. It's the way we conduct our lives. To say, "I'm not a political person" is to claim an above-the-frayness that isn't possible for actual human beings. In the same way, we often say, "I'm not a religious person" to avoid being pigeonholed as a fanatic or someone who's needlessly offensive and incapable of thinking properly. But neither religion nor politics actually work that way. And the mythology we've constructed to keep them separate in our descriptions of ourselves and others is slowly falling apart."

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