Wednesday, October 26, 2005

The Curse of Odin

In Norse mythology, Odin was chief of the gods (Thor was his son). He was the god of both war and wisdom and it was said that there was none as wise as Odin (that's why he was in charge of war--war shouldn't be rushed into rashly). However, in becoming wise, Odin had to pay a price. He became wise from drinking from this fount of wisdom (the name mistakes me) but in order to do so he had to sacrifice one of his eyes. It was a painful choice, but Odin believed that the only way he could properly rule the heavens and the earth was if he was wise. He chose to give up one of his eyes. As a result, he was able to drink from the fount, but he lost an eye and for ages after, every now and again, his socket would burn like crazy.

Wisdom does not come easy. It comes with a price. This is something I am continually learning as I travel through life.

I know there are many much more wise and knowledgable than me. There is so much that I do not know. But I have gained some wisdom over the years and it has come with a price. The past couple weeks I have been doing a lot of reflecting. I've looked back on my life and seen some times where I could have made a decision totally different than the one I chose. No one (except perhaps God) would have faulted me had I made the other decision. These other decisions would often have been the more safe choices, the choices with the least risk, the choices where I could have had a lot more fun. But, these decisions would not have been the wisest decisions. Wisdom comes with a great price.

As I have been reflecting, I know in my heart of hearts that the choices I've made and the life I have been leading has been the right one. I have no regrets. But, yet, I've been tempted. It would be much easier to live in ignorance and foolishness and in many ways it can seem that it would be much more fun. But, I would be lost then. Not only that, but even if I wanted to go back now, I can't because the knowledge is deeply rooted within me. I might be able to put on a good front for awhile, but I wouldn't be able to live very long with myself, let alone before God if I lived a lie. Once you put your hand to the plow there is no turning back. And in all honesty, I don't want to go there. I don't want to live like that. The life I know, one that is rooted in Truth and Wisdom, is the most abundant life I could possibly have. Yet, the temptation is there and the struggle for temperance continues in my soul. I'm tempted to look at this as the Curse of Odin. In reality, it is a blessing instead.

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