I have identified one possible explanation for one particular mystery in the universe. I think it likely that the difficulty of pouring one’s whole heart into something might stem from the fact that one’s heart is fragmented. At least I strongly suspect this is true in my case.
I should clarify that I mean “heart” in the New Testament Greek sense, as the center of mentation. I find it fairly easy to pour my whole bowl of emotional soup into something, and find my bowl restored to fullness as soon as another worthy cause comes along. But this is not what I mean by heart. By heart I mean the part of one’s being capable of focused, conscious, purposeful thought; and by “thought” I mean applied attention resulting in clarification of understanding and/or increased knowledge worthy of its storage space. And by thought I also mean prayer. Prayer is a very important form of thought, and a distinct one, because it requires receptivity; it requires listening space, and so is very unlike the sort of thought that results in stored information. But prayer is a form of thought because it requires structured knowledge to advance. Prayer has its own grammar in a sense, because its subject and its object are the same.
But a fragmented heart wanders, alighting on one assignment while contemplating its next — or its last one, or another of any amount of time past. For instance, my nimble heart leaps locust-like onto Korean grammar. While there, it processes its response to Aquinas, who cited Titus 3:10 to justify the policy that impenitent heretics should “be exterminated from the world by death…” Ah, but Thomas, what of Titus 3:11? If a heretic is self-condemned, where are Paul’s instructions for executing him? Isn’t removal from the church more in keeping with the idea? This thought found a wormhole; before Korean grammar, I was reading Documents of the Christian Church. And while reading that, I was mentally composing an e-mail that I still haven’t written.
Later, as I write that e-mail, I’ll likely be working out the details for the Verna equinox tea I’m having for my 96-year-old friend Verna later this week. Doubtless the matter of whether to splurge on cream-colored napkins will resurface.
Either this is not interesting because everyone does this, or this is interesting because everyone does this; or this is not interesting because no one does this, or this is interesting because no one does this. In any case, what I have learned as I focused a stray modicum of attention by writing about this, is that I must pray for consolidation of heart before I am qualified to pray for consolation or consideration.