Last updated: August 13. 2014 5:31PM - 119 Views
By Harry Croghan Contributing Columnist

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Today is just the sort of a day you can really enjoy being alive, so bright and clear. The sky is blue with some white clouds on the horizon. The grass and fields across from me are a lush rich green color. A couple days of storms with lots of lightning and thunder started out our week but our garden really needed the water and the charged lightning. It all really helps things grow. Now the sun is out to bless and warm the soil and get the juices running through the leaves.

There is a nice breeze blowing, just the kind of a day I used to go sailing. Now the boat sits covered in vines, the white sails put up, but oh, all the beautiful memories it gave me and my family. The sun, the wind and the water. Summer nights I would sail alone cutting through the quiet glass-like water where stars reflected up and you couldn’t tell where the water stopped and the sky began. I would tie the tiller down and walk forward to the pulpit and stand there as if I was flying through space with stars above and below me. What an awesome feeling of extreme quiet, just enough air to fill my sails but not enough to disturb the glass reflections of the sky in the lake — moments of extreme peace and serenity. Yes, I do miss those times but the memory is a terrific place to visit and re-experience such moments of life.

These memories coupled with the day I am now experiencing make life truly worth living. In this universe I feel that this Earth is truly a Garden of Eden. I can only wish that more of us felt this way and maybe we wouldn’t be so hostile toward each other.

In John Milton’s epic poem, “Paradise Lost,” he says, “You can make a hell out of heaven or a heaven out of hell.” The irony of all this is he had Satan speaking these words. Do our children read and study great epic poetry or the writings of Aristotle or the ideas and ideals recorded by students of Socrates? Where can we read what Jesus said, unquestionably the most well-known figure in western history? Yet our schools are silent about him. How many students have read and studied Martin Luther King’s speech, “I Have A Dream” or Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address? Today children are not taught cursive writing so our foundation of our freedom seems like a scribbled, illegible language to them. They will miss so much until the time that our history will soon be lost. Maybe they will sometime in the future rediscover it as if it was completely new. One can only hope.

I see this land for what it really is, a planet of beauty, a place where it continuously replenishes itself and sometimes with a complete renewal. According to scientists, it, the Earth, has done it several times before. So man is here in this particular cycle, what he does or doesn’t do to the earth will make little difference to the earth itself, but to man, well, he may just make a hell out of heaven.

Adam was cast out of the Garden when he ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. This knowledge made him see all things differently. His loss of purity tore the beauty out of his soul and he no longer could see the world through the rose-colored glasses of innocence. The reality was stark and he was no longer protected by God. He wanted the knowledge now he had to live and exist by it. When Satan steals the innocence of a mind and soul, sin’s reality is there but we do have a choice. You don’t have to embrace the knowledge. You can paint a new reality and Christ came here to show us how.

Now this most famous figure in all of western history is not even discussed in schools and most colleges and universities. Yet, in truth, the ministers, their wives and priests were the teachers of our civilization especially here in the United States. Just for a second delete all the colleges that were started and supported by the church. One would be surprised of how few would be left.

What has been the greatest problem in establishing peace in this world? Ignorance and illiteracy. Why are so many fighting to keep their people ignorant and especially women, but in actuality, all the people they have subjugated, ignorance and lack of real and true understanding is where the problem lies.

I see the Garden for what it is and I will not willingly change it. Some would because of their fragments of knowledge. I once read in a book that Satan was walking with a friend when a person in front of them found a fragment of truth and was very happy about it. Satan’s friend asked Satan if that didn’t disturb him and Satan said no, he will most likely make a religion out of that fragment. When we are asked in a room of law to give the “whole truth” many of us don’t know or understand exactly what that is because we were not educated to understand that meaning. That’s why so many half-truths have become acceptable to our society.

It’s a bright and clear day, a day to renew our minds and souls with the whole truth. So where will you find the whole truth? On a mountain top, deep in a cave, in a big and beautiful place of worship? Any and all of these may offer clues to where truth is but you will most likely find it in a silent extreme quiet, and you will hear it down inside yourself without outside influence. We all have it but few of us call upon it, the still, small voice God put there when you were created. In this noisy world of many, many distractions, few of us are taught to listen in quiet, the Voice within us.

Harry Croghan is an artist, photographer, writer and teacher. He can be reached at (740) 852-4906 or by e-mail at hrcroghan@icloud.com.

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