SermonIndex Audio Sermons
Image Map
Discussion Forum : General Topics : Manifesto

Print Thread (PDF)




I am posting this poem by Wendell Berry as I believe it has an essential Christian point of view with regards to economy and relations with others. Comments?

by Wendell Berry

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more
of everything ready-made. Be afraid
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know.

So, friends, every day do something
that won't compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world. Work for nothing.
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it.
Denounce the government and embrace
the flag. Hope to live in that free
republic for which it stands.
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man
has not encountered he has not destroyed.

Ask the questions that have no answers.
Invest in the millenium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.
Say that the leaves are harvested
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.

Put your faith in the two inches of humus
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion - put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come.
Expect the end of the world. Laugh.
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts.
So long as women do not go cheap
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep
of a woman near to giving birth?

Go with your love to the fields.
Lie down in the shade. Rest your head
in her lap. Swear allegiance
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos
can predict the motions of your mind,
lose it. Leave it as a sign
to mark the false trail, the way
you didn't go. Be like the fox
who makes more tracks than necessary,
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

 2004/1/2 9:56

 Re: Manifesto

Love someone who does not deserve it.

That could have been the entire poem.

 2004/1/3 2:52

Joined: 2003/10/15
Posts: 1632


This is really my posting for today's "Surrender" article - but it relates and is so good. (I didn't really write it, so I can say that :-) ) Can you imagine if all Christians lived up to the manifesto below (substituting "Christianity" for "Socialism":

~Surrender-The Whole Of Our Lives~

"We must train men and women who will devote to the revolution, not merely their spare evenings, but the whole of their lives."


Years ago, I came across a letter written by a young Communist Party member to his fiancee, explaining why he felt compelled to break off their engagement. His letter shows the type of sacrificial mind-set that was characteristic of many who devoted themselves to the Communist revolution:

~There is one thing about which I am in dead earnest and that is the socialist cause. It is my life, my business, my relgion, my hobby, my sweetheart, my wife, my mistress, my bread and my meat. I work at it in the daytime, I dream of it at night. It's hold on me grows, not lessons as time goes on. I shall be in it the rest of my life.

~When you think of me, it is necessary to think of Socialism as well because I am inseperably bound to it. Therefore, I can't carry on a friendship, a love affair, or even a conversation without relating it to this force which both drives and guides my life. I evaluate people, books, ideas and notions according to how they affect the Socialist cause and by their attitude toward it.

~I've already been in jail because of my ideas, and if necessary, I'm willing to go before a firing squad. A certain percentage of us get killed or imprisoned; even for those who escape these harsher ends, life is no bed of roses. A genuine radical lives in virtual poverty. He turns back to the party every penny he makes above what is absolutely necessary to keep him alive. Radicals don't have the time or the money for many movies or concerts or t-bone steaks or decent homes or new cars.

~We've been described as fanatics. We are. Our lives are dominated by one great over-shadowing factor- the struggle for Socialism."

The example of those devoted to Communism should cause US- those who claim to know the TRUTH- to examine our own level of sacrifice and surrender: Is our relationship with Jesus the center of our very existence? Does our every act revolve around "the cause" - in our case, the cause of Christ? Imagine substituting the word "Socialism" with "Christianity" in this last letter. Does it make you think twice about how much of our lives is really lived for Him?

Adapted from "Surrender- The Heart God Controls" by Nancy DeMoss


 2004/1/14 12:04Profile

Promoting Genuine Biblical Revival.
Affiliate Disclosure | Privacy Policy