The Haunted Heaven: Chapter Twelve: From Judas To Job
By Michael Moriarty
The title sounds backwards, I know, but given my life, that is exactly how I experienced it. As for this title appearing in a not so coincidentally twelfth chapter?
Clearly Divine Providence.
A lesson, at eleven years old, about accusations: judge not lest ye be actually judging yourself.
Our Mom betrayed herself, right before my eyes, and then laid the blame on me.
I have an Italian Catholic mother now whom I call "Mamma". The quintessentially American title of "Mom" I reserved in childhood for Eleanor Paul Moriarty. God had my Maria Luisa Calla waiting for me. Insofar as my life has always led to Job, the wait for my true Mamma's arrival was indeed worthy of Job.
Yes, I have been truly spoiled rotten by God.
Had I, like Judas, ever pondered committing suicide?
Yes. Once. At 23 years of age.
At a psychiatric hospital blasphemously called The Priory in Richmond England.
A few of the highest and lowest moments of my life were experienced in England; but about that so-called manic-depressive experience with the home of William Shakespeare, more of that anon.
As for The Priory, however, the 10 electro-shock treatments I had almost not endured there – suicide looked like the only possible way to escape any more such treatments – convinced the American military that I was unfit for the Army and life-threatening action in Vietnam. Had I not been crippled for ten years by the after-effects of Electro-Convulsive-Therapy, both biologically and psychologically, I would most certainly have found the nearest bullet in Saigon or the Mekong Delta.
Never despair completely, my dear readers. Ever!
Not even before a firing squad. That was clearly the frame of mind I saw a Cuban when executed by Fidel Castro's henchmen. The video itself has been removed. The description, however, by an eyewitness is unforgettable.
The young man in the description had to have been a Catholic, he endured injustice and his own assassination with such courage.
I was thinking last night of our Lord's most transformative moment, the seconds in which He, even in His own eyes, had become purely human.
"Eli, Eli, lama-sabachthani?!"
He uttered those words from the Cross.
"God, God, why have you forsaken me?!"
I imagine that moment surprised even God, who, as most Catholics know, was also Christ Himself.
God was finally having a taste of what it is to be a human being and to despair.
The usual story is of how Christ transformed the world. Perhaps, in that journey of His, He also transformed God Himself. And on the most intimate level.
The point being made is that God not only suffers with us but now knows us intimately as a fellow human being.
Listening to the third movement of my Concerto For Orchestra, the Allegretto Orientale?
China, a Free China calls!
Ah, how the cross-pollinating of cultures can create a fascinating drama, both musically and, more importantly … uh … otherwise.
"Michael," said the Chinese manager of the lounge in a major Calgary hotel, "Give the Chinese a taste of individual freedom, and they will never go back to tyranny of any kind."
What kind of powder keg is the Chinese Politburo now sitting on?
Meanwhile the title of this chapter challenges even myself to ponder how I went from Job to The Haunted Heaven.
Increasingly delicious prayer.
Michael Moriarty is a Golden Globe and Emmy Award-winning actor who starred in the landmark television series Law & Order from 1990 to 1994. His recent film and TV credits include The Yellow Wallpaper, 12 Hours to Live, Santa Baby and Deadly Skies. Contact Michael at firstname.lastname@example.org.