Saturday, December 12, 2015


Recently I got an email from Lee that said, among other wise things,“You're right in the middle of the 'why can't we just get on with it' zone.  The old place is ripped apart and all you really want to do is get moved into the new place.  Instead, you're stuck in the old one until after the holidays.” 

He has moved a lot in his life and he knows whereof he speaks.

As I told him, that hits the nail right on the head. It is a sort of limbo, the house is a mess and there is not much that can be done about it. Even trying to clean up is impossible, because boxes and bins and wrapped paintings are stacked on the floor and leaning against walls. It is very much a neither-here-nor-there situation.

Now I know that this is in flat contradiction to that quote from Chuang Tzu that I posted about it being everywhere. What can I tell you? My mood changes.

And even next Tuesday when we begin moving, things will remain limbo-ish for a couple of weeks. We will have things in Madison and things here on Berry Road, as we wait for the holiday trip to be over and we are able to move the cats and have the movers take the heavier bits on December 28. In the meantime, I am sure we will constantly discover that whatever it is that we are looking for at one place will be safely stored in the other place, an hour's drive away. 

Theologically, the limbo-of-the-innocents was not a place of punishment, nor was it a way-station (like purgatory) on the way to heaven. It was a place of so-called unending natural happiness and beatitude, as good as it could get for those who did not possess the saving grace of God. Our situation is not natural happiness or beatitude, but at least it is only temporary.

It is perhaps more like what was called the limbo-of-the-fathers-and-mothers, where the just who had lived prior to Christ waited until he arrived to conquer death and lead them from limbo to heaven. This is also known as the Harrowing of Hell, a popular theme for religious art at one time. Note the usual confusion between limbo and hell and ... well, just the usual confusion. These things lend themselves to a lot of that.

Don't ask me to justify either of those theological concepts, both of which have been rather quietly discarded in recent years.

As for all the rest, "Ho, ho, ho hum."


Thomas Withers said...

Don't fret, Michael. Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there someday.

Mitchell is Moving said...

I'll just skip over the theology. All I've got in my head since reading the title of the post is, "All around the limbo block, hey let's do the limbo rock..."

Ur-spo said...

I used to be in Limbo; it was right after I moved out of the Doldroms.

Ur-spo said...

I used to be in Limbo. I lived there before I moved out of the Doldrums.