A Post-Mystical World

I’ve been hearing a bunch about “Designer Babies” lately in the news. Well, it was before the holidays, but I’m just getting around to finishing this draft I started sometime ago.What I’m referring to is a growing trend in amazing scientific practice which gives a couple the ability to choose the sex of their baby. Obviously this is a controversial issue. But aren’t they ALL until the novelty wears off? I know that most reading my posts have been alive since the ultrasound was made mainstream. Occasionally you run into an “old-fashioned” couple that don’t want to know the sex of the baby even when they have an ultrasound during pregnancy.For $4,000 you can have the medical technicians at MicroSort freeze your sperm and ovum, separate the X’s from the Y’s in the sperm sample, and join several combinations for the hope of a healthy embryo. At that point, they add some sort of Chromosome Mix, shake gently and serve straight up with a twist. Well, I’m kidding about that last part, but it still taps into that same sense of having a bartender make you a cocktail. And if a cosmopolitan makes yo ufeel “special” can you imagine having the power previously only GOD’S domain, to choose the sex of your unborn child?Granted, It could let you get a jump start on the clearance sales at baby gap, and allow plenty of time for the respective blue or pink paint to dry, but those and other more serious benefits don’t outweigh one VERY subjective opportunity cost.Cheating the Mystical. Or debunking it. Pulling back the curtain, if you will.My good friend Rudy pointed out that I have the same disdain for OLD technology (from dial-up internet to the whole phone/answering machine debacle, to snail mail) as older folks may have for all this NEW technology. I immediately agreed. But as I write this, I think my inner-curmudgeon comes out on communication specific stuff–not towards woodworking tools, fine automobiles, and musical instruments. In fact, I get snobby towards the newer stock in those categories–except woodworking tools. My father-in-law gets snobby for me until I know how to use them without wasting valuable wood or digits. And in his book the former outranks the latter.Okay, now I’m all the way off the track. But not without purpose. We are an advancing culture. PROGRESS is so innate we don’t have to pedal too hard to stay ahead regardless of our endeavors. So, there’s no fighting progress. My questions is that when we make discoveries like this, and discover the secret to yet ANOTHER of nature’s sleight-of-hand maneuvers, aren’t we depleting our ability to trust in the BEYOND.Those dusty nomadic Jews wandering the same sands that are now so wrought with military activity had no problem ascribing the unexplainable to not just the existence of God (pretty much an inarguable to them) but also to His vast superiority to their simple selves. I mean, Yahweh was Yahweh to them simply by the change of the seasons or a bountiful crop.But if we have the power to not just eradicate certain cancers, but choose the sex of our babies, what is left out there for us to figure out? I know, plenty, but don’t you feel like saying “what will they think of next?” on such a regular basis?I want the mystical in my life. In fact I need it. I know my friend Rudy does as well, because I hear him saying these days that he doesn’t see or hear God anywhere. Cue all the well-meaning Christians with their simple cliches! And as soon as they’re finished, let’s talk some more about THINGS SUPERNATURAL. I think it’s important for us to heighten our awareness. We need a sense of wonder or we risk dying in the boredom of a world where we can do ALL THINGS ourself without any help from a higher power.What helps you keep in touch with the mystical? What USED to work? What do you wish worked for you?


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