03 December 2004

Brought to you by the Letter Y....

I think that the letter "Y" may very well have become my favorite of all 26 letters in the standard English alphabet. Which other letter has such versatility, such grace, such... goalpostish shape? It is a sort of metrosexual among letters, masquerading most days as a consonant, but we've all heard the rumors about "...and sometimes Y" and his/her/its double life as an occasional vowel. It's not fooling us with is machismo attitude beneath well-groomed uprights and breathy pronunciation.

I think the thing I like most about the letter Y is it's ability to pose as a question. We all know the 2-year old's affinity for our favorite letter. The sky is blue.. "Y?" And it is not until much later in life that we give up our inborn curiosity and love for this next-to-last letter, and cynically adopt the complex word, "B-cause" to explain life's conundrums. B-cause... such a harsh word, filled with jaded dreams, with a defeated attitude that says "this is how it is, how it always will be. Accept it." B-cause seems to reject hope for change and progress and betterment of the world in general.

But Y? Y should I accept the all-powerful tyranny of "B-cause?" And if you say "Just because," then I spit at you with a powerful "P." Y is the only letter that probes our minds to discover -- to discover new worlds, old worlds, microcosms, solar systems, God, self, soul, life, death, and truth. If not for "Y" this world would still be eons back... at least the English speaking world....

Y the rant about such a top-heavy letter? Because I find myself asking it often lately. I used to thing that asking Y was childish and immature and naive and facetiously hopeful, or audaciously rebellious. I mean, who am I to discover and challenge and believe and, overall, to question the way things are? I mean, I can't ask the established social norm Y this or that custom or tradition is considered okay, or Y that selfsame norm was established in the first place.

I can't question authority, "Y don't we try to do this?" or "Y has this still been going on?" That is rude and presumptuous. It assumes rights of free thought and cognition and creativity.

And, heaven forbid I ask God "Y" about anything. To do so would entice all kinds of bitterness and anger and sorrow from my safe little box of hiding within me. If you can't C it, then I'm OK. It doesn't matter if I bottle up my emotions and pretend to hide my confusion from God. So long as I never dare question Him like a little boy asking his daddy "Y is the sky blue" or "Y did Fluffy stop moving when the car hit her?"

Heaven forbid I approach God with honest curiosity and confusion, pleading "Y, Daddy, Y are things like this? Y does life work this way? Y do I have to deal with this?" Heaven forbid I question Him and seek to answer. Heaven forbid I ask that it might be given to me, that I seek only to discover what I was looking for, that I knock upon a door behind which stands the Father of Truth and all answers.

No, I want to approach the throne with that interrogative attitude, seeking to know who He is, to know what, and how and, ultimately Y things are like they are.

Jesus said that we who would approach him with a childlike faith would be received. What better describes a child than curiosity and innocent honest ignorance longing to be resolved with the simple proposition: "Y?"


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