Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Where the Wild Things Went

I have to admit that Sendak's classic book was not a part of my childhood repertoire, though it found its way into my younger brother's life. But yesterday as the Facebook memorials multiplied, one in particular struck me.

Now, I looked for this particular anecdote among the transcripts of Terry Gross' programs, and couldn't find it. Maybe someone even made it up! But it rings so true.

When something we really love comes within our orbit, we are hard-wired for the most intimate possible union with it. This is exactly why Jesus gives himself to us as Bread that can be seen and loved and eaten, so that the one we love is no longer, and never ever will be, outside of us, but will be "in" us, and that it will be "no longer I who live" but this two in one flesh.

If you are the philosophically inclined type, you might appreciate this rather heady, but richly insightful paper that investigates what you could call the reverse of that love-seeking-communion, the vice of "acedia" (also and most unfortunately translated as "sloth").  (The author shows that a culture in the grip of acedia ends up in nihilism.)


Anonymous said...

I thought you were going to quote the passage in "Where the Wild Things Are" that says: "Oh, please don't go—we'll eat you up—we love you so!" I think that is very Eucharistic.

On a related note, my son calls the book "Where Are the Wild Things?".

Sr Anne Flanagan said...

It totally is Eucharistic, which shows how in tune the Eucharist is with our humanity--or rather, how our humanity was designed Eucharistically. This is something that the mystical philosopher/mathematician Simone Weil also intuited...