Monday, September 27, 2010
Making and Breaking
[Here's a dialog from an earlier novel that explores the notions of making and breaking.]
“Alex, do you think that making is good and breaking is bad?” Gordon asked.
“So the person that makes the chains that hold the slave is good and the person who breaks the chains to set the slave free is bad?”
“No, that’s not right.”
“Putting together and taking apart are skills. Good and bad come from the way you use those skills.” Warren said.
“Breaking is easy, making is hard.”
Gordon smiled. “You’ve learned something that many people never understand.”
“So making is better?” Alex asked.
“Making is the highest, truest expression of what it means to be human,” Gordon said. “Just like fish have to swim, we have to organize things. When you organize things in a meaningful way, you are making. There are many ways to make and people have different abilities. But the common thread that ties us all together is that, one way or another, we can all make.”
“I think you might be worrying, Alex, because breaking usually goes along with taking,” Warren said. “Everyone can make, but many people choose to take instead. Even though it’s wrong, taking is easier.”
“What do you mean, ‘breaking and taking go together?’” Alex asked.
“Many people, particularly in this world, use the threat of breaking to force others to give them what they want to take,” Warren said. “Remember that making and breaking are skills. So, if you use your skill for breaking to threaten other people in order to take what they have made, then it is a bad thing. But if you use your skill to help then it can be a very good thing.”
Image: Bill Longshaw / FreeDigitalPhotos.net