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I'm an NYC-based director, and this is an outlet for my various musings about theater and about the city of New York. Sometimes the subjects run together, sometimes they are entirely separate, but between the two they comprise the most fitful, most intense, most trying love affair of my few years. They fill my head, my heart, my mouth every hour of every day; they could fill a book.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Rapture After the Rapture

For all my joking about it, I am strangely grateful that nobody got raptured yesterday.

"Don't tell anybody, but I'm kind of scared," I told my friend in the car yesterday, as the hour approached 6pm.

"Why?" he asked incredulously and, let's face it, probably a little disdainfully.

"Because, okay, I don't believe in a God that condemns anyone to an eternity of pain and suffering in general, and I certainly don't believe in a God that chooses not to reveal himself to his creation and then condemns us to that same eternity of pain for not believing. It's like some sadistic test, it doesn't make sense to me. I can't get behind that."

"Right."

"But we don't know. Maybe there is some perverse, sadistic, self-involved divine entity up in the clouds that wants us all to suffer fire and brimstone for not worshiping at his feet. How do we know?"

"That's true," said my friend.

"We don't know anything. Maybe the Greeks were right, how do we know? Maybe it's Zeus up there - why not? Why assume that God, if there is a God, is ultimately a good, loving or fair?"

Why, I sometimes ask myself, this faith in justice? There's something in us that believes innately in fairness - life SHOULD be fair, and (maybe I'm just speaking for myself) there's a little part of us that is surprised every time, over and over again, when it's not. And God is the ultimate Should, the way it's supposed to be, the path we always see unfolding before us but never manage to travel down.

But listen. We learn early on (and then again and again) that life isn't fair, despite this thing inside us that tells us it should be. Why, in that case, believe that God is?

For my part, I choose to have faith in something greater than ourselves and to believe that it is ultimately good, loving, and, yes, fair. I believe this because - honestly? - it seems like a happier way to live than believing in the alternative, despite the fact that, when you think about it, any of it could be true. So I suppose that today, the day after "Apocalypse Not Yet," I'm grateful because, for a little while at least, I get to keep my faith in the way things should be.

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