The power of hopelessness

By Brother Void
Published July 19, 2002 5:34PM (EDT)

"We are all incurables."
-- Archbishop Oscar Romero (when asked why he was attending to the sick at a hospital for incurables)

When you look around you, it is easy to feel hopeless. Things always seem to be getting worse, not better: Even those of us still working for a better tomorrow can have a bad day, week or lifetime, when all seems lost. But such a lapse of faith should not be feared. On the contrary, you should welcome it as a revelation. Our situation is hopeless. Our cause is impossible.

You are faced with a stark choice: Do you dedicate yourself to an impossible cause? Or do you look after your own, making do as best you can? The choice is clear: You must dedicate yourself to an impossible cause. Why? Because we are all incurable. Because solidarity is a form of tenderness. Because the simple act of caring for the world is itself a victory. Take a stand -- not because it will lead to anything, but because it is the right thing to do. We never know what can or can't be done, only what must be done.

I dedicate myself to an impossible cause.

Reprinted with permission from "Daily Afflictions" by Andrew Boyd, published by W.W. Norton. To order a copy, click here

Brother Void

Brother Void is the alter ego of Andrew Boyd. More information about Brother Void and his book, "Daily Afflictions," can be found at his Web site.

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