here first. until we are there.

inside the corrections

I’ve spent a good portion of the day correcting papers, most of them reflections. Two sets of them about faith. It was the last dimension of identity i discussed. Purposefully last because this is the only part where my critical faculties either go on overdrive or short circuit —– this is the time when everything falls into place and i find myself talking about God asking you just to come home to the sound of a tolling bell.

But this semester, I think i went off script and omitted the whole recovery part, the whole come back part. I ended with my critical, almost flippant evaluation of the institution that we know as the Church.

So much of the afternoon was reacting to journal entries, these declarations that yes, they were disturbed by the essay i made them read (julia sweeney’s letting go of god) but continued on to saying but i believe that God loves me. I found myself writing various versions of ‘No one’s attacking you’ and hopefully nudging them back to the critical evaluation of the dimension.

and tonight while drinking my nth glass of apple juice, i found myself crying to mikey as i explained why i did something different this time around. i think it will help to mention that while ina and i were checking papers, i showed her the next karen armstrong book i was planning to read over holy week and she said, ‘ning, yan na nga lang pinanghahawakan mo, gugulohin mo pa?’

the essay struck a chord because apart from being funny and nerdy actually, and quite uh… deconstructive (may ganon?) —– sweeney says that the one hurdle she encountered in her final letting go of God was that she had lost her brother. so the faith takes on a very personal and irrational tinge. not believing in God would mean never seeing people again.

but with the waterworks, i recounted the lucidity i found in the quieter students, the ones who did not go on the defensive, the ones who said that maybe uncertainty is the goal.

gosh. i find myself here again. in a constant state of surprise or fear or whatever you’d like to call it. i did ask that i see things for what they are, because they were all so blurry with movement. and i got what i asked for.

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