Archive for February, 2012

Flowers and freedom

My run in a dramatic adaptation of The Great Divorce ended last night. An amazing book, an amazing play. It’s a really quick read, and I recommend it for anyone with Lent coming up… a really rich opportunity to reflect on free will, God’s mercy and compassion for us, the nature of human choice, and heaven.

Here are some snaps of little bouquets I made out of the flowers I received:

Gorgeous arrangement Matt chose for the color of the roses, in a teapot.

Tiny vases on the shelf above our kitchen sink.

Giant lily overtaking a creamer on our dining table.

One for my vanity top, with unmade bed in the background.

Mini arrangement on Matt’s dresser.

Milk glass and matryushkas in the bathroom.

Finally, here is a chunk of my dialogue– at the end of the play, as the Teacher, I’m telling the Traveler (who has experienced many vignettes about the nature of human love, choice, anger, and free will) about the difficulty of understanding things from our limited perspective in time… and yet, the necessity of seeing it that way, for now, in this life. The Traveler wants to know if it is possible to ask about the end of all things.

“…all answers deceive. If you put the question from within Time and are asking about possibilities, the answer is certain.

The choice of ways is before you. Neither is closed. Any man may choose eternal death. Those who choose it will have it.

But if you are trying to leap on into eternity, if you are trying to see the final state of all things as it will be (for so you must speak) then you are asking what cannot be answered to mortal ears.

Time is the very lens through which you see–small and clear, as men see through the wrong end of a telescope–something that would otherwise be too big for you to see at all.

That thing is Freedom. Yes, Freedom–the gift whereby you most resemble your Maker and are yourselves part of eternal reality.

But for now you can see it only through the lens of Time. A little picture of one moment, following another, following another…and yourself in each moment making some choice that might have been otherwise.

The picture is but a symbol: but it’s truer than any philosophical theorem that claims to go behind it. For every attempt to see the shape of eternity except through the lens of time destroys your knowledge of Freedom.”


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