Monday, June 27, 2005

In Praise of Filth and Failure

In the beginning there was the Logos and the Logos was… messy, very, very messy. In the end, however, there is chaos, and chaos always wins, despite how hard we try to clean it up. We even have a category for the disordered, a phantasmagoric law, the second law of thermodynamics, which simply states, no matter what, after awhile everything just gets filthy again. A neat desk is a sign of … a wasted morning. A clean house is a sign of …a wasted day. Cleanliness is next to… impiety. Anything worth doing is worth doing badly and doing badly a lot. Heraclitus is right, “The human character does not have insights, but the divine does. To the god all things are beautiful and good and just, but men opine that some are just and some unjust.” Some filthy and some failing.

Logos isn’t neat, and it troubles us. So we pray to our therapy gods and take Paxil and Prozac liturgically hoping to get order back in control. But order is hubris, and we suffer the tragedy of continuously turning the compost heap. Ah new Sisyphus. We great creatures are earth worms, lowly and blind pulling stuff out of the earth and littering it upon the earth, pulling stuff out of the earth and again littering upon the earth, burying what last we littered. From dust to dust, working diligently to box it all up, mountains of boxes of dust. Desperate to control Logos with our categories and our successes, and Logos laughs at us. We are an arm of chaos mixing and mixing all into humus, skyscrapers, truth, concrete, glass, plastic, philosophy and back. Such noble creatures are we. “The beginning and the end are the same.”

So failure is the light of Logos -- the realization that we never control anything with our pretensions to success and cleanliness. Nothing, that is, but our own fantasies within our own compulsions. The only escape is to fail often and fail big and fail happy and keep on failing, because failure is the god’s way of letting us in on this one simple trick: lust for a place for everything and everything in its place, for the one true truth is the ultimate arrogance. And arrogance surely is one sin that never goes unpunished.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

failing in NH agrees in part but
questions either your sanity or mine, in some regards.Can we ever move forward if chaos is at the helm? Surely you jest!

4:24 AM  

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