Monday, October 09, 2006

The Call: Epiphanies of Recruitment

"An epiphany of recruitment is a significant experience, often remembered and sometimes repressed. It is not mere sentimental reaction or the product of emotional manipulation. The experience is often interpreted as an invitation to see things differently, to live a different kind of life, to embrace one's unique vocation. The event that gives rise to these experiences are ordinary enough. They are, more often than not, described as no big deal.
That's what Martha said when she talked about her visit to an orphanage with some friends. It was no big deal; she didn't know why she always cried when she spoke about it. All that happened was that she was introduced to a young boy from the orphanage and spent several hours with him. They really hit it off. After an hour or so of exchanging pleasantries, and playing with toys, the little boy suddenly turned his face toward Martha's and asked, as if he were asking if she'd ever walked on the moon, 'Martha, do you have a daddy?'
Martha's tears were not only for the young boy, of course. She was crying for herself as well, and she knew it. The memory of this encounter stayed with her, seemed to invite her to a different kind of life. Still, Martha had no idea what to with her invitation. Things as they were at the moment, all in all, just didn't seem to allow much of a response."

Source: Forgetting Ourselves on Purpose: Vocation and the Ethics of Ambition by Brian J. Mahan.

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