Journey to the Center of Self-Doubt

Novoselic Points at the Sistine Chapel - 1991. Krist Novoselic's column runs every Tuesday on the Daily Weekly.
This column is the third installment of a (coincidental) trilogy regarding spiritual matters.

Last night I had one of those anxiety dreams in which I was naked in public. Walking around a colossal department store, I suddenly realized I wasn't wearing anything. It was very uncomfortable, and I tried to ignore it as if it were normal. But people watched, and I worried. Then the dream shifted to another circumstance, and I was clothed again.

I live in a remote place, and even though I enjoy privacy, there are plenty of opportunities for exposing myself to the world. I write a weekly column, give interviews, and travel to events in public places. In the first installment of this trilogy, I wrote about finding truth on the way up Mt. St. Helens. I didn't climb the mountain to write a story, and I sure didn't Tweet my revelation moments after it happened. But again, I put myself out there--so no boo-hoo for Krist and his subconscious anxiety!

Writing this column has been a journey, and I've arrived at an observation: When I write about spiritual issues, as I have in the last two columns, they don't attract any negative comments from anonymous posters. I must have touched on something sacrosanct--even the anonymouth commenters have shut up. ("Anonymouth" is a conflation of the words anonymous, as in hidden identity, and mouth, as in big mouth or rudely opinionated. My use is synonymous with the term troll.)

There's an interesting quote from Nikos Kazantzakis in the novel The Fratricides--something along the lines of "What's the value of preaching if the soul isn't redeemable?" Even the anonymouthers know when to quit and reveal redeeming qualities. That, or they've been on vacation.

Kazantzakis also wrote The Last Temptation of Christ. It got the author in a lot of trouble with the religious people. In the book, Jesus has an all-too-human self-doubt. And the author ups the ante of blasphemy: On the cross, Jesus fantasizes about having the life of a regular human--even of living to an old age. But near the end of the illusion, Jesus faces his disciples, who had also grown old. They call him a coward, deserter, and traitor for bailing on his destiny as savior. But the visions are all an illusion conjured by the devil. Kazantzakis' Jesus shook off the trick and accepted his fate. He acknowledges his duty by shouting "It is accomplished" in the moment before he departs this realm. Kazantzakis even has Jesus redeeming himself after his thoughts went astray! And what a way to go--nailed naked to a cross.

I want it to be clear that I've only witnessed an apotheosis. I'm still alive.

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