Saturday, November 24, 2007

The end is where we start from

posted by Chet at 12:33 PM UTC

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
These lines from T. S. Eliot's Little Gidding might be a suitable epigraph for this blog. The postings here -- these morning musings -- are a recapitulation of a lifetime of exploring, which has taken me in a great wide circle, for the body knows what it knows and keeps us on an elastic tether.

All those journeys! Seventy times around the Sun. Twenty-five-thousands spins on the Earth's axis. Two billion heart beats. Forty years back and forth along the Path. A hundred times up and down the Holy Mountain. Poking and prying. Turning over stones. Stripping bark. Rolling back the eye of the observatory dome. All those hours in the library stacks. And I am back where I started, a skinny Catholic boy from Tennessee who loved to play in the woods.

We are what we are. But without the ceaseless exploration we don't know what we are, or who we are, or where we are. And even then, after those billions of miles and heartbeats, we have only a hint of what is this place we call home.