BrainTeaser | Sherma E Benosa

Life is a puzzle; we are the clues, and God is the answer.

Life is a Performing Art

AN UNSEEN HAND turned an unusually bright spotlight upon a darkened stage. Out of nowhere, a figure stepped onto the platform, with no idea how he got there or where he came from. Neither did he know what to do. But in his mind, he seemed to be hearing a voice fainter than a whisper, giving him a vague instruction to act and to say something. 

 Half-bewildered, half-suspecting someone was pulling his leg, the figure looked to his left and right, and realized that he wasn’t alone; that he shared the stage with several other beings — puppets, marionettes, dolls, and stick figures — who, like him, had no idea why they were there.

 

It was as he turned to his right that the figure noticed something peculiar: the arena where he and the other beings were to perform had no seats for spectators.

 

 

AFTER HOURS OF walking to and fro the stage — many times crossing paths, a few times colliding, and sometimes walking alongside the others — the figure just knew, though he couldn’t explain how, that he was being called off the stage. So he delivered his last lines, bowed to the other beings, and started to make his exit. As he retreated to the backstage, he heard some kind of noise erupt. Whether it was a collective applause or booing, he wasn’t sure; he didn’t turn to see.

 

Reaching the backstage, the figure saw a silhouette making weird gestures as though he was conducting an orchestra. Thinking that the silhouette was another actor about to step onto the platform, he gave him a sympathetic look and exclaimed, “Whew! That was some kind of a play. A scriptless one! Would you believe that? And undirected, too. Weird, isn’t it?”

 

Receiving no response, the figure persisted, “By the way, are you an actor, too?”

 

The silhouette shook his head, not taking his gaze off the invisible orchestra. “No, I’m the director.”

 

Stunned, the figure exclaimed, “The director? You are the director? Why then aren’t you directing? I would have been spared of all those collisions. I would not have gotten lost. I would have been able to put in a better performance; I would not have a-fretted and a-strutted upon that weird platform like some kind of a drunk!”

 

The silhouette momentarily turned his attention to the figure. “I was. You just weren’t listening.”

 

 [seb/july2005]

 

Re-posted to cap my “Life Is…” series.

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5 comments on “Life is a Performing Art

  1. virtualfriend
    June 24, 2008

    It’s a multi-pronged interpretation of life Buddy! It can be God as the director and mankind as the performer; it can also be man directing his life to success or failure. Now, it’s up to us to determine whom we should give credit for the applause, or to whom we lay the blame for the booing.

    But can we blame God if we fail? ♥♥♥

  2. brainteaser
    June 24, 2008

    Hello Buddy!

    Can we blame God?

    Yes, we can.

    But must we?

  3. virtualfriend
    June 24, 2008

    I don’t know Buddy but in the whole choreography of life’s (performing art), is there an unwritten script to explain the latest ferry disaster in the Philippines? Is this God’s will or a play with an absentee director?

    The gods must be crazy, I mean the people who have let the ferry sail despite bad weather conditions.

    Ops, enough of this. I get sick if I am too serious hehehe!

  4. virtualfriend
    June 25, 2008

    Hey Buddy. Here’s one performing art we’ve overheard with my colleagues awhile ago:

    One blonde to another blonde: “Oh, yesterdey I went to see my OB for a pregnancy test.”

    “Were the questions difficult?” answered the other.

    🙂

  5. brainteaser
    June 26, 2008

    Ah, Buddy! Here you go again, making me answer your difficult questions.

    In your first comment, you asked if we can blame God. And I said we can. We are capable of doing it. And we do. But whether or not we must blame Him is an altogether different issue.

    As to your second question, now that’s the tough one.
    Let’s look at the “tale” from your interpretation: that the director is God.

    In the tale, the director was giving instructions, but the actor didn’t listen. Now, who is to blame for the actor’s lousy performance? The director or the actor?

    As to the ferry that capsized, I really couldn’t answer that. I don’t know.

    But here’s what I think on laying blame:

    We humans tend to put the blame on God whenever things go wrong; yet we take all the credit when things go right. When are we going to look into ourselves and realize that for most of our misfortunes, we’ve got only ourselves to blame? (PS: I’m not talking about the ship that sunk; I’m talking in the general sense.)

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