AP Language & Composition
----------- – 4th Hour
January 28th, 2011
Heaven Only Knows
When we move into sunlight, our pupils constrict in order to protect our eyes. The less light that gets in, the safer our eyes can stay. If for some reason, our pupils dilate instead of constrict, opening them up to that harmful light, our eyes can be permanently damaged, never to see the world in the same manner again. Our families (and our society for the most part) try to protect us in a similar fashion. But it isn’t just damage to our eyes that is a cause of uneasiness. It is a fear for our innocence that makes our parents block certain television channels or place their hands over our eyes and ears when there is an outbreak of violence. In the last sentence of Ecclesiastes, there is a bold statement on how increased knowledge yields increased sorrow. When we look at the way children view the world, at their wonder and amazement of even the basic things, we can see that this is, in fact, very true. For when we begin to know and understand how the world works, we can easily see the evils that our parents and loved ones have tried so desperately to protect us from.
There is a legitimate reason that we idolize child-like wonder. When we try to imagine what life was like as children, when the Tooth Fairy was real, when there was water instead of bullets in our guns, when we had plastic cups full of juice and not beer, we find it challenging. It is difficult to go back to something like that once we’ve seen the other side, once we’ve seen the truth, once we’ve obtained the knowledge. In the song “Pretend” by the artist Lights, she talks about this loss of innocence that cannot be reversed. “Once in a while,” the song starts, “I act like a child to feel like a kid again. It gets like a prison in the body I’m living in. ‘Cause everyone’s watching, quick to start talking, I’m losing my innocence. Wish I were a little girl without... [continues]
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