So who is on first? Is it God? Allah? Buddha? Someone or something else? Or maybe their name is simply Who.
Abbott & Costello initially made the Who’s On First question famous with their baseball sketch in the 1930’s, the same decade that Morgan Freeman was born. Now in a new century, Freeman is essentially asking the same question in the National Geographic series, “The Story Of God”.
I watched the one-hour series premiere last night. The first episode was called Beyond Death. Within minutes, I was moved to tears. I was moved in so many other ways too. Case in point – the 3 pages of typed notes I took while watching, several more pages of thoughts crossing my mind after the episode, and the start of a few posts for here. I have a hunch I may be writing more about this all in the days to come.
Yesterday was another noteworthy season opener. Three games started the 2016 season of Major League Baseball in North America, and there will be another 11 match-ups today. On Sunday, my local team the Toronto Blue Jays, opened their season with Chris Colabello on first base. In future games, it could be Edwin Encarnación or Justin Smoak on first. The dates will advance, the opponents will vary, and the jersey numbers will change. But the position will remain the same: first baseman. And the position of the team will remain the same as well: their belief that he can do the job. They will trust him, respect him, and have faith that he will be there for the team in both losses and in wins.
So back to the question … who’s on first?
Does it really matter what the answer to this somewhat rhetorical question is? OR … is what truly matters the belief in the person, whoever he or she may be at any given moment in time? Or not to be for that matter. To be or not to be. Another infamous question.
My personal opinion is that it’s the beliefs. So I guess my answer to the question is that their name is in fact Who. The alias name for Who in my life is God. The alias for you could be something different. And that includes Nothing. For a belief in Nothing is still a belief in something. Again, it’s the actual belief that matters.
I realize not all of us across the world have freedom of beliefs, religious or otherwise. That saddens me. I am grateful to live in a country where I do have those freedoms. My hopes and prayers are that all of us one day will be protected by the fundamental rights as noted in Article 18 of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.
And may all of us also be protected by the above noted freedom to change our beliefs. Heck, Abbott and Costello never answered their own question quite exactly the same each time they performed. Their routine varied as it was done in an atmosphere of improvisation. So may all of our individual beliefs be held within the same. May we always be free to use our intuition, follow our stream of consciousness, and find answers to our life questions ‘on the fly’.
Now let’s play ball. Together.
Regardless of who’s on first.
Morgan Freeman quotes …
All you have to do is believe. Then you will see everything. – The Lego Movie
The whole purpose of life is to pass on what was learned. – Lucy
Circumstances have taught me that a man’s ethics are the only possessions he will take beyond the grave. – Moll Flanders
We sink, we swim, we rise, we fall, we meet our fate together. – Lean On Me
You want to see a miracle, son? Be the miracle. – Bruce Almighty
I think it is the excitement only a free man can feel, a free man at the start of a long journey whose conclusion is uncertain. – Shawshank Redemption
Image source: National Geographic Channel – Australia