Emily Carson
September 29, 2003

How do I live out all of my days, if not in the promise that one day I will be full? And how do I suffer, if not in the hollow of this emptiness that is starving me? I am sinner and saint, but I can say finally, ‘I am hungry, and I have lost everything looking for the morsel that will be my redemption.’ I have not starved lightly; it has been no small feat. And I have not bled lightly; it has been everything I had. But I am still here, and I am no closer, it seems, to my deliverance than I was on the first day I woke up to my hunger.

My pain is certainly a manufactured one, but it is still my pain. And this hunger has been my secret, but it was always known to me. The craving that fills every breath is the thing I call ‘life’. The dying that stares at me every day is the thing I call ‘human’. I am lowly and base and reduced to my simplest desires. I am nothing of what I wish I was. And I am striving only and finally for a meal and a peaceful end.

We are not holy or lovely, and we are not kind. And it is in this speck of matter, this moment of human starving—it was in this that the seed of light was placed and is growing. I am the most unlikely soil. It seems almost impossible that transcendence begins here; it seems almost ridiculous. But I, the lowest speck, the basest fear, and the most overwhelming hunger—I am the beginning, and I will be the end. And all light that invades experience happens not in spite of me but because of me, all hope built on my most unlikely form. And that one who seems to never have enough killing will be the one to liberate this world.

There is no stranger circumstance and none more certain than this: that we are base and we are God. And there is no conflict. If it was in this form that light was entrusted, then it must be so for a reason. And though you may understand nothing of the reason, understand this that you are, believe in this that you are. And understand that light knows best and would not pick a soil in which it could not grow.


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