My favorite video game is called Borderlands. It is your basic run-and-gun (or in my case spray-and-pray) / kill all the bad guys with guns and grenades / Sci-Fi / other-world kind of game. It is set on a fictional planet, in a fictional time, in a fictional place, where the world has completely lost all civility and survival of the fittest is the only real law (think Mad Max meets Blade Runner). I like the game of Borderlands because it gives me hope. Why? Because I know no matter how bad things get in this world, it will never be as bad as Borderlands.
As I was doing my 1,000th (I lost count) playthrough of this game with my wife yesterday, I came across something I had never noticed before. On the side of an old rusty shipping container were the words, “Turtles All The Way Down”.
This reminded me of an anecdote that our pastor told in church one day that was recently featured in Stephen Hawking’s “A Brief History of the Universe”. The story is about a professor who was giving a lecture on the structure of our solar system. After the lecture, someone came up to him and said, “Your theory that the sun is the center of the solar system, and the earth is a ball that rotates around it has a very convincing ring to it, but it’s wrong. I’ve got a better theory.”
“And what is that?” Inquired the professor politely.
“That we live on a crust of earth which is on the back of a giant turtle.”
Not wishing to be rude, the professor attempted to dissuade his opponent by pointing out an inadequacy in their position.
“If your theory is correct, what is this turtle standing on?”
The student replied, “the turtle is standing on the back of a second, larger, turtle.”
To which the professor says, “What is the second turtle standing on?”
The answer, of course, being a third, even larger, turtle. This went on for a few minutes and ended with the student triumphantly stating, “It’s no use, professor – it’s turtles all the way down.”
A quick google search revealed that there is a book entitled “Turtles all the way Down” and the book is about, you guessed it, dealing with the anxiety that the world is falling apart around us and how we must remain hopeful about the future.
My point is that, no matter what your personal beliefs are, we all have to find something that gives us hope for the future. Whether that comes from a video game, your personal view of the universe, religion, or something else – find it – it is important. Personally, my plan for the next part of my journey, is to read the book and see where that takes me. If you need inspiration to do so, here is one of my favorite quotes to get you started.
“When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.”
– Guess who said that in the comments, and you will win nothing.