Keeper of the Fire, Living for Meaning

Upon reading the article on Kernaghan titled “Keeper of the Fire,” I was amazed, shocked, discouraged, and motivated. The passage that spoke to me the most was a direct quote from Kernaghan: “”It’s very much like a fantasy. My family was all-inclusive love. I was set loose like a cannon. That, combined with religion, blew the whole thing to shreds — every day life was flat, zero, meaningless. My parents were disturbed by me, worried about me finding a career. But they sent me off in a direction where I could live for meaning. Life is precious. I fuckin’ hate injustice. No one should interpret our lives — we should speak for ourselves.” I found this passage particularly stimulating and thought-provoking because it touches on so many different levels of the meaning of existence: all inclusive love, precious life, the obscenities of injustice, and the idea of self-determination. While Kernaghan speaks of his own experience and how the above factors have shaped him, I think that the author is implicitly stating that the necessary ingredients for a world-changing life are all right there, all out in plain sight, all easily-accessible. The means by which a person can change the world, whether it’s by humanizing a brother or sister or by radically calling attention to rampant injustice in the world, are means that are right in front of our eyes. Creating situations of all-inclusive love, setting our passions loose like a cannon, living not for the every day life but for the precious gift of being able to determine our own paths are all fairly achievable realities. And for those that do not have those opportunities, those under the foot of systemic injustice and unfair working conditions, our realization of the above-mentioned ideas is more than paramount. Kernaghan attempts to call society out for its allowance of injustice, and by hitting hard and fast, even the biggest giant will fall. This passage and article brilliantly show the difference that one person can make in a world that constantly tries to tell us otherwise.

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