Friday, March 27, 2009

Sameness or Choice

Another month and another thought in mind....

I just recently read a fictional book about a community of people who were not given choices in matters. Everything about their life was regimented and controlled. From who they were going to marry, how many kids they were allowed to have, the names of their children, all the way to the occupation for their life. By the time a child was 12 years old he went with all other 12 year olds to the Elders of the community to be told their occupation and to begin training in the occupation chosen for them. Everyone was happy because no one knew anything else. This life was all they knew and it was believed anything beyond their known life and community was simply 'Elsewhere' and frowned upon. The thirty 12 year olds each went before the head Elder to receive his occupation in life. One child in particular -Jonas- was given the most honored and revered position. His position was the Receiver. The Receiver's job was to be sure memories from generations past never entered the community. Memories of birthdays, holidays, feelings of Love, Hatred, Sunshine, Snow, Wind...etc. The Community knew nothing of these things because they became part of the Sameness movement. Everything in their lives were bland. Everything was gray with no colors in life. Everything was the same.
The Receiver was to live a life of solitude because all the memories of the world was on his shoulders. He dealt with all feelings and all memories both good and bad. Warfare was unheard of in the community, Love was a foreign word. People who did not fit in with the community, or were too old, or a 'newchild' who was not developing properly were simply 'released' from the community. 'Released', Jonas soon learned from the Receiver before him, was the killing of the individual by lethal injection. All his life he had heard being released was something pleasant and not to be feared. Watching it with his own eyes and having the memory of death in his mind he knew it was killing and nothing else. He learned also of colors. The colors of the rainbow were not known because with Sameness everything was gray, literally. Through his year of training with the old man he learned so much and wanted to change things in his community. He realized nothing was right without the freedom of choice. He and the Receiver soon devised a plan to get memories and feeling back into the community; allowing each individual the freedom of choice.

As I was reading this book I found it very very weird. That is the only word I can find to describe it. I knew it was fictional but at the same time it sounded familiar. The more I read the more I realized many of those same things go on in our world today. Abortion, Euthanizing, China has a rule with the number of children a couple are allowed to have, other communist countries choose the occupations of their citizens; this book, however fictional it was, spoke volumes of truth. So many people around the world and many in our own country don't have the freedom of choice. The new born does not choose to live or die, just as the old, slow, or retarded. Many people are going through life not seeing the colors and vibrancy life has to offer. They are too caught up in other things while life passes them by taking the joys, sorrows, love, hatred, and everything we take for granted with it.

Here is the thought I want to bring you today: Life is before you, whether you are old or young. It is there and it is waiting for you. On the other hand... Sameness is also waiting for you. You can keep going through the motions of life with sameness as your guide. You can make a choice. It is our God given right to choose. Those who are trying to play God and choose life and death for others will be judged on Judgement Day. Here and now though, you do have a choice. Choose life, choose color, choose choice, choose all the things we sometimes take for granted. Make the choice while you still have it.

Until next time,