a

I don't want to watch 'A Hidden Life'

there's this part in the Odyssey where

Odysseus goes down to Hades where the

dead live mmm scary and he goes down to

get some advice on his trip home to

Ithaca and while he's there he meets

Achilles who was killed in a battle and

Odysseus congratulate him on having

great luck in life and also in death

because he says you have great power

among the dead okay and then Achilles

responds Odysseus you must not comfort

me for death I would prefer to be a

workman hired by a poor man on a peasant

farm than rule as king of all the dead

that's quite a statement if you think

about it placing that high value on

earthly life even at its most bleak

it reminds me of Emily Webb's monologue

in our town this is after she dies and

then comes back to look in on her old

life and she says do any human beings

ever realize life while they live it

every every minute believe me I love

life isn't that a good thing there is so

much beauty in the world around us there

is so much joy and laughter to be

experienced in relationships with family

and friends faith community you name it

which is why I don't really want to

watch Terrence Malick's recent film

about Franz Jaeger shedder even though I

know I should want to see it

I have heard parts from his letters to

his wife if you don't know about him

this was a man who decided to take a

stand of conscience refusing to take an

oath of loyalty to Adolf Hitler and

fight in his Wars conscious of the fact

that he would be killed for it and lose

his home his wife his children all of

which he loved deeply and he did it

without any support not even from his

wife she actually tried to change his

mind when he was in prison but

eventually came to understand why he

refused to give in why he refused to

give in was because there was something

more important to him than life I find

that kind of lonely moral clarity

incredibly challenging and also

extremely difficult which is why I don't

really want to watch the film

where does that kind of courage come

from and moral clarity often looks like

stubbornness or fanaticism as some of

the film reviewers have pointed out what

difference did it make that he was

killed

couldn't he have just have figured out

some way to get along I don't know the

answers to these questions but I do know

the feeling his story evokes in me and

it's not a pleasant one it's more of

like a shocking challenge I think I

personally am quick to give glib answers

you know about why I believe about what

I believe and my faith commitments but

when you actually see what the cost is

it's kind of breathtaking so I'd love to

hear anyone's thoughts on this or if

you've seen the film and how it's

affected you