Popcorn Medievalist

. . . for i had perceived that reality is a frightening place, and i did not wish to live there . . .

Location: Canada

Monday, November 17, 2003


How long had I followed that dreary path, the day that I came to the crossroad? How I had laboured, each day a tiring and protracted necessity, driven only by a hope and by a determination that I should not return to the place from whence I had come, the place which I despised.

Arriving at this spot, I beheld that the pathway opened into a vast courtyard stretching far around; a thousand roads diverging into every direction—beckoning me; each pregnant with promise of meaning, of latent joys, all the things which might be sought after to make one whole. The possibilities dazzled, the choices overwhelming. I was filled with a vigour then that I had not known before. I felt the weighty burdens fall from me. I ran around the courtyard; I cried out in my excitement; I leaped into the air.

It was then that I heard the soft whisper: “Do you like what you see?” I looked around in surprise and I saw that it was the voice of my mother, who had come up behind me. Before I could answer her, she spoke again: “My son, you have come to this place to receive your calling. Do not set your heart on these; your path is already chosen,” and she pointed me back to the way by which I had come—the one path which alone was not beautiful to my eyes, for too well I knew its treachery.

I rebuked her, saying, “Have I indeed come all this way, to a place of such possibilities, to be returned to the place from whence I came, the place which I despise? Surely there was some meaning, some purpose in this long and agonizing journey. Surely I will not abandon my quest just as it opens up to me!”

But my mother spoke again and said, “The other paths were not intended for you. This path is your birthright, the way of your forebearers since the beginning. You will return down the path to your home, to the place where I bore you; and there, in the fulness of your weariness, you will give up your spirit. This is the fulness of your purpose.”

I responded in anger: “Surely I am not bound to follow the meaningless path of my forebearers; surely I may choose my own road!” As I said it, I looked into my mother’s face, and I was suddenly struck by how much resemblance there was to myself. And then I knew in my heart that the words which my mother spoke were true, that I could not take any path but the one which led back to home.

My mother stroked my hair, and she whispered to me, “Be at peace, my son. When you have gone from this place, as you journey home, you will learn to love all that you now despise, and all that you have seen here will cease to concern your heart. When you have returned home, you will be ready for the completion of your purpose.”

I had but one more question to ask my mother before I departed for home: “Why then have I been brought to this place, brought before these other paths?” She answered me, “My son, consider this matter long, for it is in pondering this question that you are going to find yourself.”