Meditation. Initial thoughts: Jesus is hopeful. I am too cynical. Lord deliver me from this overly-cynical body of death!
In reflecting on this passage I realized where my postmodern sensibilities stop. I believe one of the most dangerous temptations of living in a postmodern age, believe it or not, is not moral relativism (a danger to be sure…but one that needs qualification…the relativist still believes in something!).
It is cynicism. A quote from African-American poet Maya Angelou is apropos:
“There is nothing so pitiful as a young cynic because he has gone from knowing nothing to believing nothing.”
There is a fine line between being prophetic and being a cynic. The cynic can easily fall prey to a world void of hope with no possibility of a better day. Being suspicious of absolute truth claims can be a profound moral practice. Being overwhelmed by suspicion to the point where no ‘truth’ speaks and no one can embody the ‘good’ can easily lead one down a path of apathy…apathy towards life, the journey, walking closer to God, and participating in projects that make the world a better place (even if it is a small corner of the globe).
No! We can not let cynicism rule us. Be prophetic! Rail against the Powers! Imaginatively hope beyond the present boundaries erected by varied interests. Let us be hope-filled realists…not hope-less idealists.
“A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.” – H L Mencken