what pirates and indians bring to the surface.
i just finished reading an article in smithsonian magazine from 2004 about j.m. barrie and his literary creation, peter pan. it’s been 104 years now since the play first debuted in london to rave reviews, and the story itself has enraptured audiences for just as long. this article proposed the same theory as to why the tale of peter pan has lasted so long that i’ve read over and over again: the inevitable loss of childhood ways to the world of adulthood and responsibility. we find a connection with peter’s desire to always remain a little boy and have fun, because at some point or another, we find that youthful mentality slipping through the cracks in our fingers. it is a universal, inescapable rite of passage that everyone takes. some make it eagerly, but i think many of us have a point at which we realize just what’s happening, and that there is no way to stop it. i remember being thirteen or so (and i spoke of this in an earlier post, so i won’t tread upon old ground) and becoming aware of how the way i saw the world was changing, and it terrified me. the film “finding neverland” did an excellent job of showing barrie struggle with this very transition through the lives of the llewelyn-davies boys, and to a certain extent, how he never really got over his own loss of innocence. i’ll be twenty-four next month, and i STILL mourn my childhood. i find it hard to accept that i cannot go back to the way things were, the metamorphoses into man is an irreconcilable one. it is done, and i have to come to terms with that. perhaps this is a yearning that we never lose. i’ve also been thinking a lot recently about the verse in the Bible that speaks of having faith like a child, and how this might tie in to the story of peter pan. my pastor even mentioned something about this verse on sunday, how a kindergardener can so easily understand the nature of G-D, much more readily than someone who has grown out of childish fancies and allowed their lives to become mired with the day-to-day of this life. the disciples were asking jesus who was the greatest in the kingdom of heaven, an He replied like this:
2He called a little child and had him stand among them. 3And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 18)
glory to G-D for His backwards logic! what an incredibly difficult concept for us to wrap our minds around! when i think about this, i have to REMEMBER what it was like to be a child; how everything looked, how it felt, the things that i believed. i loved and relied on my parents so much that whatever they said was the truth. i didn’t question it. it’s this insane trust that is the best model for faith we have. there is simply no reason to believe in what we do that can be proven by logic; it just is what it is. this is how children operate. they aren’t hardened to the words of others, they don’t analyze everything before making a decision, they don’t look at the world with years and years of skepticism encrusting their hearts. they simply believe. this is the great challenge before us. we have to hack away at those things that shield our hearts from accepting TRUTH. we have to make it so we can look upon the face of christ without the rules of this world yanking us back into what we so pathetically call “reality”. and it’s not a one time excursion, either. every moment there is something telling us we are fools, that what exists in the literal is real and tangible and the only thing worth seeking after. it’s the only thing that is logical. but our faith is not logical (i think i’ve said this before too, sorry). so we much push past equations and proofs and charts and all the bile of earthly existence to reach G-D. it will never be easy, and it SHOULD never be easy. this is a process that will stand at our doorstep until our dying breath.