Think back. [Maybe you don’t have to think back too far. lol] Remember when you were little [or not so little], and your birthday, Christmas or another gift-giving holiday was drawing nigh, and the anticipation of what present[s] you might receive was making you feel all a-twitter? If presents were under a tinsel-laden tree or stacked on a table, could you resist the urge to slink over to them, give one or two [or all 😉 ] a shake to see if you could deem what surprise was hidden beneath the colorful wrapping paper?
I’m drawing ever closer to the ripe age of 60, and I still feel tingly when I espy a present or two for me [mostly because it touches my heart to think that someone wanted to go to the time and trouble to get something for me] — but I now have a lot more self-control when it comes to trying to learn what surprise is lurking just around the corner. There’s something to be said for the glee of anticipation. 🙂 I learned that … we’ll call it “the hard way”.
When I was … oh, 11[ish] or so [truthfully, I cannot remember exactly how old I was at the time], one of my sisters and I decided to go on a hunt for any Christmas presents we could find that might be lurking in some dark, hidden spot in our home. We were sure our mom had done some holiday shopping already [for whom, no one knew] because she always would be so coy whenever she was asked what was in the bags she brought home after an afternoon out and about. We were instructed to stay downstairs while she lugged the bags up to the second floor, and while we obeyed her directives, still, we were intrigued. We were old enough to know, by this time, that Mom was off to hide the gifts. But where? we mused.
Fast forward a few days, and given the opportunity, my sister and I decided to take matters into our own hands. Mom was otherwise occupied [probably baking or something], and Deb and I crept upstairs — the most likely place to start our hunt — to see if we could locate the hidden spot where Mom tucked away her bounty. We had to be very quiet in that creaky, old house. Every step could give away our mission if Mom, although otherwise engaged, heard the floorboards squeaking. You could be downstairs, and know exactly where someone was upstairs. However, at 11 and 10, both Deb and I were rather well-versed in where the suspect boards that could give us away were. 😉 We started in our parents’ bedroom — searching beneath and behind furniture. We opened drawers, and even stuck our hands between the mattress and box spring on the bed. No luck. Next, we headed for the closet. Quietly, we opened its door, and peered into the darkness, seeing only the clothes hanging neatly along the rod. Our mom was shrewd. We knew we had to leave everything exactly how we found it. Otherwise, she’d be privy to our quest! Carefully, we pushed the clothes aside, and there, revealed on a back shelf, were a few tucked-away items for each of us and our other siblings. They were not wrapped, and, sitting out on that shelf, no longer in their bags, Deb and I could tell which gift was intended for each of us, our siblings included. The gig was up — but guess who the joke was on! I haven’t thought about this occurrence in years, but bringing it to mind today brings back that sinking feeling I experienced the moment my eyes saw what was on that shelf.
Deb and I carefully returned the closet to its original state, closed the door — and never went looking for our Christmas gifts again.
Except for ruining the anticipation of what you might be getting for a birthday, Christmas or another such special day, have you ever thought how wonderful it would be to have a crystal ball or time machine — or Jedi holocron — so you could venture/see into the future, know what lies ahead? If you could, would you truly be happy about knowing? Those were the thoughts that were swimming around my head after watching “Holocrons of Fate” earlier this fall. [The Rebels episode aired on October 1.] Imagine being able to see into the future — say, so you’d know what the Stock Market is going to be like. A person could make a killing, and become incredibly rich. Me? That isn’t important. It’s the knowledge — about anything and everything — that one could garner that intrigues me. Maybe one could learn of a cure for a terrible disease that plagues us even in these modern times of medicine. Maybe our [or another country’s] space program will find beings on some presently unknown planet out there in the universe. Perhaps, given the opportunity to see into the future, one would learn that our world, as we know it, has been destroyed. I am not a dooms-dayer, but just as one might gain positive knowledge, it is just as easy to find out something that spells gloom and doom. Once one attains such knowledge — good or bad — what would you do with it?
[Spoiler Alert!] When Kanan and Ezra go to retrieve the Sith holocron that Kanan left in Bendu’s care, the ancient sage warns both Jedi Master and Apprentice: “… Such power comes with a price. Once a secret is known, it cannot be unknown.” How very true that counsel is!
Still, with possession of the Sith holocron, Kanan and Ezra decide to return to where [Darth] Maul, himself now in possession of the Jedi holocron, is holding their friends hostage. “When joined, any secrets, wisdom, destiny can be seen through the Force. One could bring much chaos with such hidden truths,” Bendu alerts the duo. How very true that counsel is! As I watched the episode of Rebels over and over again [in preparation for writing this blog 😉 ], that thought began swimming around and around in my head more and more. Chaos usually is associated with anything and everything negative, but chaos oftentimes does occur in positive situations as well — and as such, its possibility never should be taken lightly. [Case in point — while mostly peaceful and jubilant, some mayhem and destruction of property occurred when Chicagoans took to the streets earlier this month to celebrate the Cubs’ World Series win. How would you like to head off to work the morning after only to come upon the vehicle that is supposed to get you to work had been damaged by excited fans the night before?].
Sure, knowing what the future holds has its merits. It could keep you from being in the wrong place at the wrong time. It could make it possible for you to garner incredible wealth. It could give you the chance to save humankind. The possibilities, the different paths are endless. But, once in possession of such knowledge, what would you do with it? Would you do anything differently? Think about it… Here you are, sitting reading these musings of mine [Point A], and you are given the opportunity to see into the future [Point B]. Say, at Point B, you find out that by this time, a cure for some disease is discovered. Perhaps the key to that cure is some unknown-to-2016 scientists element [that has yet to be discovered] — an element that is discovered sometime between Point A and Point B. You just can’t ascertain when or where as you look into the future. What good has it done you to be privy to the knowledge that a cure has been discovered? Knowing is enough, you might say — and I won’t argue with that line of reasoning — but it certainly doesn’t help you, or anyone, now.
Always in motion the future is, Yoda explained. How very true he was.
Don’t get me wrong. Knowledge is power. I believe that — completely. But knowing what lies in store? I don’t think I want to know any more. It was a sad lesson I learned all those many years ago. When Christmas morning came, and my family gathered in the living room to open our presents, I didn’t know specifically what was contained in each gaily-wrapped parcel [my mom — to this day — will continue in her effort to be cryptic by “hiding” a gift in a box that won’t give the surprise a way 😉 ], but, disguised as some of the items were, I still knew at least what a few of the gifts were that were sitting in front of me — and in front of each of my siblings. I couldn’t glance at my sister. I didn’t want to see the look on her face, knowing that if there was even an iota of sadness reflected in her dark eyes, it would deepen my own sadness. And maybe give something away? Yes, I feigned surprise as each gift was opened [thankfully, there were some surprises], but truth be told, the magic of Christmas morning was a bit less bright that particular Christmas Day. I had no one but myself to blame. To this day, never have I repeated that experience. The good, the not-so-good — let the future unfold as it will.
What about you? Did you ever find a holiday surprise — either by mistake or on purpose? Would you want to know what the future holds in store? Please share your tale/musings in one of the comment boxes below. 🙂
Before I sign off, I’d like to wish each of you a very Happy Thanksgiving. Two of the many blessings I have are the chance to visit with you twice each month here at Coffee With Kenobi — as well as Dan and Cory giving me the opportunity to be part of the CWK Family. Thank you all! 🙂
Until next time,
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