Monday, December 13, 2010

Apathy: The demons know about it, and so can you!

No spooky demon-dogs were
harmed during the writing
of this blog
Think of something you care about. Now think about something other than food (I'm guilty). Any noun will do. Is this cause, this person, this possession, this thing, worth sacrificing for? I mean, would you be able to function as a fully capable person without this (insert noun here) of your devotion? You never really know what you have until it is gone (or so I'm told by musicians, angsty romantics, and environmentally-concious consumers).

It is sad that folks never truly appreciate the blessings in life. We become... familiar with what is given to us. Familiarity breeds contentment. Contentment breeds apathy. And here we are, with no cause or purpose, engulfed in our own apathy.

In The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis paints an otherwise ordinary world with perspective from an extraordinary viewpoint. We read the letters from one of the chief tempters of Hell, Screwtape, to his young and inexperienced tempter of a nephew, Wormwood. As I was reading, there was one piece of advice mentioned multiple times by Screwtape: keep 'em apathetic! An example is Screwtape's response to the event of Wormwood's "patient" repenting of past failures. Screwtape writes,

"It remains to consider how we can retrieve this disaster. The great thing is to prevent his doing anything. As long as he does not convert it into action, it does not matter how much he thinks about this new repentance. Let the little brute wallow in it. Let him, if he has any bent that way, write a book about it; that is often an excellent way of sterilizing the seeds which the Enemy (God) plants in a human soul. Let him do anything but act. No amount of piety in his imagination and affections will harm us if we can keep it out of his will. As one of the humans has said, active habits are strengthened by repetition but passive ones are weakened. The more often he feels without acting, the less he will be able ever to act, and, in the long run, the less he will be able to feel."

This frightens me. Not so much because of the themes of cosmic battle for souls or the sadness of humanity... This frightens me because this IS me. Is anybody else ever afflicted in this way? (I'll answer for you... Probably). When an idea, a self-truth, a charity, a willingness to sacrifice for others, enters the head, how often does our love of comfort and personal bubble keep us from making the world a better place? I often criticize the world, the Church, my friends, for the inadequacies that plague them. But what of me? What of US? Real love is shown through the giving, the DOING of something for others. Starting at the bottom, one person at a time, is how movement is initiated. I'll love, you'll love, mankind will love.

Fighting the tyranny that is the somewhat fictionalized Executive Branch of Hell,

1 comment:

  1. Familiarity breeds contentment. Contentment breeds apathy. And here we are, with no cause or purpose, engulfed in our own apathy.