Friday, June 8, 2018
On the Occasion of Bourdain's Death
This journey isn’t always a happy one.
Some people see the world and their own path with with acute clarity, and many of those people are steeped in anger and with hope unclear. Sometimes such clarity narrows or even erases boundaries; boundaries are what keeps personalities and actions in check, allowing people to move and create without destroying themselves in the process of resolving that anger and gathering hope.
For people unbounded by normal constraints of propriety, political dictums and selfish socio-economic funnels, the combination of clarity and being unbounded sometimes reveals darkness in this world. This darkness breeds and is one foundation for depression. It’s not clinical, it can’t be logotherapized away, and won’t disappear until we get better at facing down our personal and collective demons rather than pretending that such as Jesus will cleanse sin, all that money can kill pain, and 'it' will all be fine. The darkness bites, it stings, and damn, it burns.
It takes the best people down sometimes. Pain is pervasive; it makes cuts in pages that have not yet been read and shades areas on canvas that hasn’t yet been colored. Many people make allowance for such pain in loved ones, because such understanding hurts too much. The roots and branches of this depression can present as a terrible tangle. The ability to see and understand are gifts of clarity and purpose, and those two cut against the grain in our glossy, image-obsessed world. Again, sadness and depression can result. I hope we learn how to love without so much self-centrism someday. Our mud and dust will inevitably return to the earth, and meanwhile, we need to pay kind attention to both the shadow and the light that accompany us. Keep your loves close and listen to voices that plead for change and mercy.
Remember that it’s good this journey isn’t forever a happy one. Much of the discomfort of this world isn't simply an easily resolved and obsequious pain/pleasure duality; rather, they can create a sort of symptom and cure pathway requiring introspection and changes. It’s true that some see the world with greater clarity than others- and those people are sometimes driven out of this world by a kind of madness that often separates them from others, for both good and ill. In fact, they might even become well-known or even a sort of legend despite this clarity of sight and the pain it causes.
To all the mad ones and those who see with clarity-I hope that those around you can help to maintain your strength and purpose. Such are those who often bring about a better world through their inner vision.
For Bourdain and Harrison and Clayton, and for too many others, as well.