The Gospel (DVD Script)
In the Greek mythology, Sisyphus pushes a big boulder uphill everyday. He pushes it up, but it rolls down; as it rolls down, he pushes it up once more. Day after day until the unlikely day that he dies at the foot of the mountain.
The famous Beckett drama, “Waiting for Godot,” expresses the same theme. Both the actors onstage and the audience are waiting for Godot. They wait and wait right up to the end, but Godot never shows up. The actors and the audience need to go home.
Nobel Prize winning masterpieces such as Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea, Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude, Sartre's Nausea, Gao Xingjian’s Soul Mountain and others, have all expressed the same hopeless emotion: desolation after success, loneliness in glory, and lost in pursuit.
More than 2,000 years ago, the ancient Greek philosopher Plato pointed out that humans are like prisoners in a cave; what they see are the shadows cast by the light on the cave wall, never knowing the real world outside the cave.
Prior to Plato, Socrates prophetically warned: “You will find that the more you know, the less you know.”
In the process of seeking truth, man finally realizes that he himself can never reach the other side, like an infinite shore. On the road to seeking goodness, they become caught up deeper and deeper in sin. In the struggle to achieve immortality, they fall, generation after generation, into the abyss of death.
Human beings seem to have two equally powerful forces at work within them: one drives them to an unending quest for the ultimate truth, goodness and eternal life; the other is determined that they will never find any of the three.
A cruel logic. (How cruel this logic is!) Mankind, like Sisyphus, is bound by destiny to repeatedly push that big boulder, unable to stop the vicious cycle. Like the characters in Waiting for Godot, we endlessly wait, unable to fulfill expectation. Like those searching for Soul Mountain, we search day and night, unable to find the ethereal homeland.
The entire history of human civilization can then be summed up by three indisputable facts.
First fact : Mankind must search.
Second fact: Mankind cannot find what they are searching for.
Third fact : We are trapped between our desire to search and our inability to find.
Is this our fate?
No! There is a fourth fact.
About two thousand, five hundred years ago, Socrates said : All I know is that I know nothing; I just seek. Meno questioned him: “How will you seek something you do not know? Even if, by chance, you find it, how do you know that it is precisely what you were looking for? Did you not just admit that you know nothing?”
This is the fourth fact in the history of human civilization: people have no idea what they will find in their search.
Aristotle did not know that his search would lead to Newton. Newton did not know that his search would lead to Einstein. Einstein did not know that his search would lead to Hawking. Hawking did not know that his search would lead to Singularity as the point which buries all other searches. Then, who does know what mankind is ultimately searching for?
To accept the truth of this disheartening fact actually leads people to real hope. The Word of ultimate truth, goodness, and eternal life earnestly sought after by human beings for generations has already come to earth. Most likely they failed to perceive it when they saw it, and failed to listen when they heard it, because no eye had seen, no ear had heard and no mind had conceived it before. As a result, human beings are insignificant yet arrogant, narrow-minded yet stubborn, ignorant yet proud, and thus unable to understand the Word which is a thousand times greater than they.
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