My early years were spent in what would become a barrio and didn’t need to change much to qualify. In high school and college I had a few friends who introduced me to the social atmosphere of drugs and alcohol. I had enough inner character to not participate but I have distinct memories of a flop house in San Francisco with funny smoke floating in the air. I was in Vietnam. As a young adult I pastored a church in the inner city of Boston and not only got off at the train station but walked the streets and visited the homes. As an adult I had a friend who would drag me to some local bars. As a teacher I did extra hours home teaching and went into the housing projects to work with kids who could not make it to school. There is a word for most of this with the exception of my childhood home: Depressing.
I know what an environment based on hope and Jesus is like and how it contrasts to the typical life space of what we are labeling as snowflakes and millennials today. I have been in the inner city homes of families in our church that radiated warmth and fellowship even though they had little money. I have been at parties with the affluent that seemed to be desperate attempts to achieve the make believe world of happiness.
When I see brief pictures in the news of violent mobs agitated by the America hating Communists on the left I recognize the atmosphere. It is an echo of all the empty socializing I have seen over the years. I don’t need to visit a room full of modern socialists like Antifa to know what it would be like. In a word, depressing. At least it would be depressing for anyone with a healthy outlook on life.
I worry about them. I think they are a genuine danger to the peace of the world, let alone the United States. Ultimately, in my heart, I pity them. I feel the emptiness in their hearts and the desperate attempts they are making to fill it with so many false promises. I have quoted it before but let me give you the words of Blaise Pascal in Pensees, before I quoted from Project Gutenberg but I found another translation offered on Christianity Stack Exchange that was longer than the one I had marked.
“What else does this craving, and this helplessness, proclaim but that there was once in man a true happiness, of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace? This he tries in vain to fill with everything around him, seeking in things that are not there the help he cannot find in those that are, though none can help, since this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words by God himself.”Keep in mind that half of the battle for meaning is looking in the right place. You usually can’t find pizza at the hardware store.
Have a blessed day.
homo unius libri