Well, I suppose it’s time to out myself. Babylon 5 is one of my all-time favorite TV shows. It’s also a show that takes seriously religion, faith, and the struggle to find meaning and uses them as central themes. (Ironically, the creator, J. Michael Straczynski, is an atheist. Nevertheless, he believes that all people should be treated with respect and integrity, including their beliefs.) Airing during my late teens and early twenties, it came at a very formative period and influenced quite a bit of my development Throughout the series, various questions are asked, and I continue to ask them to this day.
The Vorlons ask the question, “Who are you?” It’s a question that most of us ask at some point or even all the time. I certainly do. Kevin? That’s just my name. Son, brother, etc.? My relationships to family members. Receptionist? My job, what I do. Vestry member at church? Also what I do. As I’ve written earlier, so much of my sense of who I am was caught up in what I did. I still have trouble with that. All of that seems tied up with my identity. Can I even answer the question without tying myself to someone or something else? Can I even say there is a fixed identity? Am I the same person now as I was when I was 20? As I will be when I’m 60? Yes. And no. If we’re made in the image of God, then perhaps that’s one thing we can’t fully grasp this side of the veil. That actually reminds me a little of something from the last season. Dr. Franklin tells G’Kar, “Can God create a puzzle so difficult, a riddle so complex, that even he can’t solve it? What if that’s us? Maybe a problem like this is God’s way of doing to us a little of what we do to him?” If we can’t put God in a box, then maybe I can’t put myself in one either.
There are more questions, but dealing with all of them would make for a very long post; so I’ll break it into a series. Come back tomorrow for “What do you want?” . . .