By Matt Keppel
O Radiant Dawn,
splendor of eternal light, sun of justice:
come and shine on those who dwell in darkness and in the
shadow of death.
I remember when I was a kid, my friends, my sisters, and I used to play in my parents’ basement. Everything would be fine until someone turned off the light. It would be this point that someone would run and get hurt or freak out. Okay, I would freak out. Have you ever seen The Amityville Horror? Not the shoddy remake, but the horrific original. The one with the blood flowing down the stairs and the evil well underneath the basement stairs? I saw it once… when I was 6. It has haunted me ever since. When those lights went off and I was stuck in the basement, those scenes came flashing back. The darkness has that tendency: to dredge up our deepest, darkest fears. It is no wonder really. What was once well defined through illumination is now overshadowed by infinite possibility. With no point of reference, our imaginations run wild with fear in the driver seat. Yet, the mystery of darkness is more than a place of immobilizing fear, rather a place fluid with possibility. While we wait for the light to break the darkness, we often panic doing whatever we can to protect ourselves. Some people run, trying to escape, others tremble in fear doing what they can to hide from something that penetrates our deepest self. Yet as much as it is a place of fear and unknowing, it is even more a place of opportunity. Despite what our eyes tell us, much can happen in the shadows.