Monday, June 21

Deceptive Treasure

Some aspects of life are righteously considered sacrosanct. Few compare to the innate and universal treasure humans refer to as "free will". God (aka Morgan Freeman) in the comedy film "Bruce Almighty" made this point to the selfish character of Bruce (Jim Carrey) with wit and flair. Wise parents understand the necessity of negating much of the young child's individual wishes in favor of imposed absolutes such as, "You can't go outside without your shoes on," or "You must wait to cross the street," and "It is bed time, NOW." On a doctrinal theme, a seemingly opposite value is appreciated as we are encouraged to trust that personal freedoms actually blossom once we give our will to that of the Father. There is, however, a disturbing manipulation of this concept in the animal kingdom.

Normally I wouldn't mind to learn that a cockroach was dispatched. Good riddance. Heck, I've facilitated that trip myself many times; individually and en masse. The end was accomplished pretty quickly; a little broom, a little shoe, a little chemical bomb - ta-dah! The deed was done. Now I have learned more than I wanted to about the Jeweled Wasp and her intensely diabolical method of "feathering the nest". 1

Of course one anticipates violence when survival of the species depends upon the flesh of another. Parasitic methods - the whole victim plays hapless host thing is fairly common in nature, and that doesn't trigger too much of my gag-reflex (as long as I am not the host, thank you). But when the host is surgically altered to willingly follow Mrs. Jewel to his very grisly and time-consuming death - that is a different matter.

The altering of the cockroach's free will is effected by a surgically precise sting to what basically is the cerebral cortex of the cockroach brain (apologies to entomologists; it's not really a brain, it's just cerebral ganglia). The stinger actually has probing sensors that guide the wasp to the correct spot. They that know call this area of the ganglia the "escape reflex". The venom instantly acts to subvert the roach's ability to walk on its own. Did you catch that? He is not paralyzed. He can move - but only as the wasp directs - or literally, leads him by the antennae like Fido on a leash. This effect has been coined "zombie". 2 The destination of course is the wasp's burrow. Once cockroach is comfy inside, she lays her egg on his abdomen and tidies up by sealing the entrance as she leaves. Though, I'm not sure why because the houseguest is not going anywhere - ever again.

The resultant evolution of the egg to larva to pupae to emerging adult is as usual. But in true Hitchcock finesse, baby knows exactly which organs to feast upon and in which order of consumption to insure a living, fresh host and not a putrefying one until week's end, it may emerge Alien-like out of the body of the expiring roach. Sigourney Weaver herself could not combat this.

The inviolate treasure of our free will to think for ourselves, to act, to be ~ is in and of itself a much more complex issue than we often give it credit for. Especially so when burdened with our own desires for how others should act. No matter how fervently we believe our choice for someone else is correct or worthy and even lofty - it is by divine decree that we may not rob another of their right to exercise the singular gift that makes us all most like our eternal birthright; even when we ourselves are temporarily imposed upon. It may be disappointing, it may be literally heart-breaking, but it is. Hence, the upward struggle to really, deeply trust in Him.

How then, the lowly cockroach? While the she-wasp is on the hunt, he is without protection from her theft of his freedom to choose if he is not wary.

Elevated from the insect world, we are thankfully destined for much greater things as children of God. We are free to navigate ourselves safely through every crisis or experience that might attempt to diminish or dismiss our True Identity. 3 We must not give in. We must never give up. To do so would in essence enable the venom of worldly distortion to rob us of our ability to move on our own.

The treasure is after all, not in pounding our chest to say it is so ~ rather, it is in who are becoming in the journey.

1 comment:

Bandanamom said...

I keep forgetting to come visit here Cindi since you were virtually a disappearance act for quite a while. This is an excellent post.