Conversations with Fear

Imagination: April 17, 2002

     "Ha!" burst in a familiar voice. "Your thinking is unguarded again!"
     "Well, if you're so smart, what was I thinking about?"
     "Imagination. You were thinking about imagination. Weren't you? Huh? Huh?"
     "Yes, I was thinking about imagination."
     "Imagination indeed. What an unmitigated waste of time. Science, technology, mathematics. These run the world. These are all you'll ever need. After all, global economic competition, that's what life's about these days. For Heaven's sake, just look around you! Oops, how did that slip out?"
     "How did what slip out?"
     "My reference to the upper 'H' word, of course."
     "Oh! Of course. You're afraid of our human imagination, even a child's, aren't you?"
     "Your imagination terrifies me," conceded Fear.
     "But why?" I asked.
     "Because you see the possibility of a whole, healed world—including how simple it would be to achieve if everyone took personal responsibility for their own thoughts and actions, which really isn't asking all that much. But even more than your imagination, I tremble at that of an unfettered child who is raised with love, because they can easily be taught to see me not at all, which means—perish the thought—I could actually cease to exist."
     "I very much doubt that," I replied, "because you and Love, like all things in the universe, are bounded by unity, which means you're merely shades of the same dynamic. You're simply that part of the dynamic that we're taught to reject within ourselves, our perceived weakness and imperfections."
     "You put things so damned simply. I'm into obtuseness and obfuscation, not simplicity," said Fear. "If teachers are allowed to help children nurture and enrich their imaginations, as you would have it, my sense of security would be in a shambles—and you know it! My security lies in people's unquestioning acceptance of my authority. If people used their imaginations in a positive sense, like Walt Disney did, why they'd begin to question me and ultimately ignore my commands."
     "I know!" I agreed. "And there'd be many more creative Disney-like imaginations in the world. I also know that's why you fight so hard to limit the education of students in K-12 to technology, science, and math. They're distractions to separate the children from their emotions so they'll grow up 'dead' from the neck down and thus keep you alive by turning a deaf ear to the 'minds' of their hearts and their consciences. That's the only way you can feed the corporate-political machine and foster worldwide competition that is destroying both cultures and their environments in service to your notion of value, which is self-centered greed that is based on spiritual bankruptcy. Am I correct in my interpretation?"
     "Yes, unfortunately. You have no idea how I hate the whole concept of spirituality."
     "Oh, I have an inkling! But tell my why."
     "Why? Why?! Because spirituality is the ultimate source of a positive imagination. And I have never met a truly spiritual person, in any age, that could be lured into a disaster mentality. They simply refused to enter the dark side of the future, my future, which leaves me—ME!—helpless in their presence. In fact, I disappear like a puff of smoke in a strong wind, every time I confronted a truly spiritual person. Alas, I suppose it will continue to be so."
     "Of course it will. That's exactly why we need to protect, encourage, and nurture the positive imagination of children and young adults throughout their school years in the safe venue of Love and compassion."
     "Not if I have my way, you won't!" rallied Fear. "You'll educate for global competition, just as you are. Technology, science, math. None of this useless 'Love and compassion' mumbo jumbo. None of this silly, warm and fuzzy human relationship jazz. And certainly not imagination! I'll see to that!"
     "Well, what about the Head Start Program?" I asked. "Isn't that putting a kink in your works."
     "I don't even want to talk about it," said Fear as it fled into the future.

© chris maser 2002. All rights reserved.

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