Search This Blog

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Man on the Moon ... RIP Neil Armstrong

Sonshine just burst into my room to tell me the first guy on the moon, Neil Armstrong is dead.  Now because I've been following the Lance Armstrong story, I was a trifle staggered. My mind leapt to a million and one scenarios did he die? What had happened after he said yesterday he would no longer fight the doping allegations? (Something I totally support - seems like a witch-hunt to wear him down. Spending millions to defend yourself for years against an agency that is tax-payer funded and seems to have a personal agenda against you must be nothing but a frustrating no-win battle). Then I heard sonshine say he was 82?? Ok, wrong Armstrong!! I immediately thought of Louis Armstrong but thought 'didn't he die ages ago?' You can tell my brain's a lil slow today ... LOL. Sonshine said - Mom!! Neil Armstrong!! I immediately remembered that I have a space geek for a son, so of course, it would be about THAT Armstrong.

And the REM song 'Man on the Moon' immediately came to mind. Now, I know that the REM song is a tribute to Andy Kaufman and nothing to do with the Moon etc but the two have always been entangled in my mind. I also have a nature that reaches for things that are out of reach .. the difficult .. that which stretches .. I call it it 'reaching for the Moon' ... don't ever tell me anything that I really want is impossible, I actually simply think you mean I should try harder... *giggle*

So, I totally respect Neil Armstrong - Astronaut, first man on the Moon. He conquered a out-of-this-world surface everyone said was impossible. Millions over the centuries had stared at the Moon and must have dreamt about going there. Many tried and failed but Armstrong and his team and NASA believed and believed and worked and worked and refused to give up in the face of the failure of other teams, of the tragic deaths, of overwhelming odds. They dedicated their lives to chasing this ideal - to conquering this cold white surface that was totally out of reach but seemingly close enough to touch.

I have always wondered how Neil Armstrong felt in that moment of stepping out unto the Moon. July 20th 1969, 22:56 hrs EDT, watched breathlessly by over half a Billion people around the world, the first man stepped out unto the Lunar surface. His words 'One small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind' were a lot more prophetic than he might have thought. After the first successful Moon landing, mankind has gone on to do greater things. We routinely send people into Space.  We have Satellites that Orbit the earth. Now commercial firms offer space flights for ordinary people. Ruinously expensive at the moment, tis clear, the day will come when prices comes down and are affordable. We are discovering our Universe and nothing seems out of reach any more. The World watched breathless a few days ago as live video feed was beamed from the planet Mars, by NASA's 'Mars Lander'.

That's what happens when you let go of your fears and reach, strive, fight, push back obstacles for what you really want. Suddenly, a whole new world of opportunities open up. You grow, you challenge yourself, you reach for the stars, and if you are my son - you want to be the first man to land on the Sun. Yes, yes, totally crazy eh? But do you think someone told Neil Armstrong he was crazy the first time he said as a kid 'I wanna go to the Moon'?

Dream new dreams. Dream CRAZY dreams. Reach for the impossible. Let nothing stop you. Refuse to settle for less. Refuse to settle for the mediocre. Refuse to accept the commonplace. Refuse to hear everyone tell you 'this is how it's always been done'. If you have a burning driving passion inside you, then reach out, pursue it, grab it, live it. 

Do you refuse to settle for 'pat' answers? Do you keep questioning? Do you refuse to be like everyone else just so you can fit in? Many people think having faith in GOD means you should have no questions. When I read my bible, I see different. I find a GOD who delights in engaging with man. Who freely gives the gift of Wisdom. Who is thrilled when a man or woman refuses to take no for an answer and instead appeals to His grace, mercy and love. What kind of GOD would want dumb followers who do not ask questions? Who do not seek deeper knowledge? Who do not want to know Him deeper? GOD is not afraid of your questions for one moment. GOD does not think in the box and is delighted when you think out of the box and stop trying to enclose Him in the tiny little box that is the close-minded human mind. 

He chuckles when you refuse to accept the logical and begin banging down Heaven's door. He delights in people who refuse to accept the discouragement of the crowd saying 'it doesn't make sense - just accept the inevitable'. So when the Shunamite woman's child died, and she refused to swing into funeral preparation mode, but instead was - 'If GOD gave me this child, then GOD will resurrect this child', you could almost hear the tangible excitement in Heaven. Finally, someone who understood that with GOD 'Nothing is impossible'! 

So, here's my lil tribute to Neil Armstrong, to you, to me, to everyone dreaming impossible dreams ... REM's  'Man On The Moon'.  Enjoy.


No comments: