Preface Book Two (UNDER CONSTRUCTION)
Glimpses, Portraits, Impressions...
The years leave shadows behind as they pass.
They can mask as much as they reveal.
Only by probing into what these shadows hide from view can we really begin to explore the meanings of our lives.
Having to live my life without Ben has awakened my natural predisposition to explore the hidden interstices of life. Personal tragic loss arouses our curiosity and, perhaps, enhances our perceptiveness to probe the intrafolds of existentialism.
The challenge before us is to climb out of the well into which loss has thrown us. Grasping hold of the opportunity is within everyone's reach unless we surrender to any number of temptatious escapes that lure us into complacency with their deceptively false promises.
If we numb ourselves by compulsively eating, abuse of alcohol, Melancholia or other addictive behaviors, we will miss the restorative opportunities to live life on a higher plane which paradoxically ... loss offers us.
The higher we climb toward the antennae of a skyscraper, we can see farther and more clearly. The haze has been lifted.
The common ground of experiences on which our lives stand is fairly broad. Many readers will smile approvingly if I mention as an example the plastic covers on our grandmothers’ sofas to which our legs stuck when we were kids; a time when the sofa, I suppose, was valued more for its pristine, almost ritual cleanliness than its utility.
The stories I tell in this book are about the glimpses, portraits and impressions-those long lasting or everlasting feelings we retain of
those special others, each one uniquely yours not unlike your fingerprints.
Do you ever wonder about your molochim, your angels, who enter our lives when they do? Although their presence may be fleeting as sometimes happens, the impact they have upon our lives can be and often is forever.
"I wonder why a Mr. Gallo, my eighth grade civics teacher, but not Mr. … uh, well, I can’t recall his name, but I think he taught English or something like that?"
There is no one satisfactory answer. One can ascribe it to random forces, coincidence or happenstance. Call it by whatever name you wish. Now I do recognize that some readers will find this contention farfetched, fantastic and certainly improvable.
Furthermore, I’ll agree with all of those criticisms without changing my belief that we do have molochim in our lives. The Aibishter sends them to help us along life's path at certain points in time.
Think about that. You have your own.
Their job is to teach us life lessons by the power of example. They transmit essential values. Think of it in terms of a relay race. Did you ever see one or be part of one in a high school track and field event?
The key to winning this brief but especially intense race lies in the efficiency with which one runner passes off the baton to his teammate.
Of course, speed is essential, but let’s suppose, for the sake of argument, that the running speed of each team is approximately the same. The variable, the factor that will determine the winner, becomes the precision of the relay itself.
So it is with our molochim whose contributions over time to our sense
of self are cumulative and interrelated.
Everyone has molochim in his life.
Their effect upon us might also be
compared to the interrelatedness of the building trades in the construction industry. The work of each is a prerequisite for the next to be able to do his job.
Think back to the most influential people in your life-those who shaped your character, your ethics, your sense of morality, right from wrong, what did these parents, teachers, spouses, clergymen or friends have in common that enabled them to have such a formative impact on you?
The answer is simple: each gave more than he took; each added to, rather than detracted from, the construction of self.
We interact with innumerable people throughout our lives, but only a handful leaves an impression that not only does not fade with time but assumes an ever greater importance as the years pass.
What we remember about them and retain for ourselves needn’t have been anything grandiose. Perhaps it is nothing more than a favored figure of speech you've adopted, a certain mannerism performed habitually or something as simple as a smile and a welcoming manner for all whom we encounter during the course of our daily lives.
Alan D. Busch
Note to Readers:
I have organized the chapters into thematic groups: family, friends, teachers … you
get the idea?
Keep in mind that the molochim I have chosen were culled from a longer list but for
reasons my own I chose the ones I did. Suffice to say that a lifetime later, whether my
interaction with them was short-lived or extended, I remember it as if it were yesterday
and remained conscious then and now these experiences would be among my life
Molochim do, as you are probably already aware, leave indelible impressions much
like those of artistic handiwork upon modeling clay.
Might there have been others as important whom I did not choose? Perhaps but I had
to decide. At the very least is my hope you will be left with an angelic reflection of
the impression that my molochim have had on me, and even better if I
were to cause you to reflect upon your own comparable molochim.
I do not intend to try to attach any one virtue to each moloch. That would be
an over simplification as many if not all share the same virtues. It is just that a
specific virtue might have developed more prominently in one more so than in another.
This does, I suppose, account for the infinity of angelic human variety.
Please do keep in mind that my molochim and yours are human beings and that I
ascribe angelic identity to them metaphorically, but that they act as agents of The One
Above I have not one doubt.