Friday, August 12, 2005
The sculptures of Michelangelo need no introduction to most people. And one of his most massive sculptures is a statue of Moses, completed more than four hundred years ago, often called his best work.
If one looks closely at the statue of Moses, however, you will find a long, narrow dent on Moses' knee. It is the mark of an artist who was never satisfied with his own work.
As legend has it, after completing the statue, Michelangelo is said to have cried, "Why dost thou not speak?" He fully expected to make cold marble come to life. In anger at what he perceived to be a failure, Michelangelo struck the knee of the statue with his chisel.
Endowed with imagination and dreams, we humans have pushed our presence beyond our own solar system. We've been given the knowledge and imagination to cure and heal; to explore and discover. And amidst it all, we remain humorous creatures as a whole. We greatly create and then find fault in our imperfections.
We often worry about events and circumstances that, in the larger context of Life, are trivial or comical once viewed from a distance. We paint our faces and cover our skulls with "human carpet." We have television shows about anything but reality and some of our most popular shows are of our fellow human beings being incarcerated, tried and sentenced. We park ourselves in front of a television loaded with a weekend of sporting events and call ourselves "athletic." And we direct our lives by tarot cards, horoscopes, lottery tickets, zodiac predictions and weather forecasts. We most assuredly are the grand paradox of great imagination and humor. At best, we remain folly of the Grand Creator.
So where does the balance remain? Perhaps we take ourselves serious enough to simultaneously stand in awe at the gifts given to us while giggling hysterically at the silliness in which we use these gifts. We are indeed silly creatures.
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