I was at a gathering last week at which there were a variety of folk from various backgrounds, professions, ages, and interests. It wasn't a religious event. The last panel of speakers was called "Last Remarks," for which several of us were asked to give two minute "final thoughts" for life to this mixed and attentive group. This week, I share with you my remarks.
There is more.
There is more than the power and real pride of accomplishment. There is more.
There is more than the overwhelming grief that can texture loss. There is more.
There is more than anger at injustice, or yearning for healing.
There is more than vast multi-layered cosmos that is itself more than what we can imagine.
There is more than the smallest proton or the simplest gesture of welcome or compassion.
There is more, even, than joy.
My business card tells you where I find more — or where more has found me. But I have no desire today to try to convince you I'm right about that, or explore with you ways I might be wrong. More is not an argument to win. More is an Infinite Possibility to point to.
But more is actually not actual at all, I think. It isn't, really. For it isn't a thing among things, just bigger. The more I want to point to, if I can, can't really be pointed to at all. "It", if you will, is beyond being. It is otherwise than essence.
But the language of "is" is the only language we have. I cannot talk of the more without calling it an "it" and implying it "is." Philosophers call it ontology. And we're stuck in it.
But the more is not just fodder for philosophy or theology. It's not about whether it is or is not. It's about what it does to what is.
I believe the more inspires our questions, draws us to look in each other eyes with something other than fear or self-justification. The more raises our hands in praise, catches our breath before wonder, drives us to ask what is good and what we should do because of what is good.
The more carries us through argument to reconciliation, through battle to mercy, through suffering to acceptance without despair.
The more is word, gesture, blessing, releasing, calling.
The more moves among us and within us.
But, again, I believe the more is even more than all of that.
It is the Other, in response to whom, or in response to which life has value,
and life is more. . . .