All I have left is the everyday faith of a geezer

I’m a part of Generation G for geezers.

And I’m hoping today that some other member of my Generation G can toss me a bone, though preferably not one of your own.

Because I need help.

I can’t come up with the date I’m trying to track down. My best guess is that it happened in the past two decades. Since I associate the change with them, it may have been about when I stopped using the words waiter and waitress and went to the word server.

The only thing I really know is that before unsaid date, I ordered iced tea from said servers and afterwards, I began ordering unsweet tea.

At first, I suffered through the usual Generation G grumpiness over any change aside from a change of anything except underwear that has begun to chafe. But eventually, I began to see it as a useful shortcut – an easy way to distinguish between the sweet and unsweet varieties.

I wish we had as easy a way of distinguishing between faith and religious faith.

Just to make it easier to talk about them.

Today, I’m going to take a crack at that.

I’ll italicize faith when I mean the special religious variety and leave it in plain type when I mean the plain everyday variety. All this is because something about the latter kind struck me the other day: That it’s impossible to get along without it.

I know many people of faith have the same sense – and that it’s a special connection because it involves connection with something eternal, something everlasting.

But I don’t see humanity as everlasting – as a species, even. So, I have trouble with the notion that much about us is everlasting. On the other hand, I do think there are truths about humanity – things about us and our values and connections with one another – that will last as long as we do; that is, during the thin slice of eternity we occupy.

There is a bright side to this: Even if cockroaches, molds and viruses are good best to outlast us –taxation will not. (I ask you not to share that information with accountant friends so as not to endanger their mental health.)

Anyhow, within the limitations I’ve spelled out, I see truths about people, how we should treat each other and get along as being true for as long as we’re around – something I can have unitalicized faith in.

So, here’s my two cents, which, adjusted for inflation, will cost you three: I find much of this talk esoteric -- a word highfalutin, but in a higher tax bracket.

Because the moment that made me think about this last week was a kind of everyday revelation. It’s a simple belief at the heart of me, that the best thing I can do on any day is this: be myself, to which, over the years I’ve found no workable alternative, and to be as open to others as possible.

I know, the daily newspaper offers little evidence of this being an effective form of action. But the simple truth is I’d find it hard to live in a world where that isn’t the right thing to do -- no matter how far short I might fall of it on any given day.

Understand this, too, though: If, somehow, taxes manage to mutate and find a way to join cockroaches, molds and viruses in the things I suspect will outlast us, all bets are off.

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