Wednesday, December 06, 2006

... for whom the bell tolls

one of my favourite metallica songs is for whom the bell tolls - i think it's from ride the lightning - says "time marches on", set in the context of men fighting a war they don't necessarily know the reasons for, and don't even know the reasons for the tasks they are given ("for a hill men, men would kill. why? they do not know...") within the war itself. the men in the song are pushed into a situation they have no control over, they blindly move forward without knowing what they're doing or why. they're a lot like the people i see around me every day.

i'm moving house, moving interstate, moving from sunny sydney to marvellous melbourne. sydneysiders and melbournites alike express amazement and surprise at my decision, both commenting that the usual mode of flight is melbourne to sydney, not the reverse, and certainly not for my chief stated reason: i hate sydney's climate.

the lease has been signed, we have a phone number, i have three train stations, a tram line and a few bus routes all passing within a twenty-five-minutes'-walk radius of the house. i have a very cool housemate, good prospects for work, good friends helping me to move down there.

it's been a plan of mine for some time, around eighteen months to a couple of years, to pull up stumps from sydney and move south to cooler climes. i don't like the humidity in sydney but sometimes i feel like i'm the... focus of circumstances outside of my control.

i know that that is the cosmic truth. the nature of life in a fallen world, properly considered through the lens of the Bible, is that the control we think we have in our lives is at best temporary and at worst utterly illusory. to a certain extent, i'm a victim of my own flesh; to a certain extent, a victim of sydney's (australia's) obsession with "financial security"; definitely contemptuous of the ways such "security" ties people down... something of a golden cage.

who wants to be told they're a prisoner? we fly from one place to another, one experience to another, one opportunity to another... education, business, relationships, experiences... philosophies, religions... all to distract ourselves from the truth that we have no control - we are slaves. "you are a slave, neo."

so i'm flying south...

... for the winter ;)

1 comment:

swellen said...

Sometimes I feel like I have my hands on one of those toy steering wheels that you buy for kiddies in the car. I think I'm steering but in fact someone else is in control... which is alternately terrifying and exciting. On a good day it's both! People keep asking me what I'm doing with my life, and tell me what I should be doing... at such moments I can't help remembering Morgan Freeman's character in Lean On Me who, on being told what he should be doing, says, "I don't have to do anything but stay black and die!"