We pause to acknowledge the passing of Leonard Nimoy, who played one fictional character I adored, Star Trek’s Mr. Spock. I was and still am a “Trekkie”. I even took on a Vulcan name, “T’Sai”. On one date, my old beau (another fire-breathing Spock fan) took me to a Star Trek Convention.
Among the episodes that became a marker for that season in my life was “Amok Time”. At its first airing, I was 13, my last poetic year. I was suffering, as early teens do, at the same time Mr. Spock was suffering in pon-farr (sort of like a rutting season for Vulcans) for his pre-arranged bride, T’Pring.
In the half-human/half-alien character Nimoy developed on the small screen, suffering ran like a silent, powerful, potentially violent underground current. Having an introverted personality, I knew every bend in that river. The main idea I took away from the collected “Spock-centric” episodes is that we all carry some kind of secret suffering. Managing our personal internal suffering becomes an engrossing task throughout life. The never-ending struggle is to contain the pressure that always threatens to crash through the dam of civility and become a lawless display. At certain times it was more difficult than others. Happy to say, I have learned to deal with it well enough over the years.
Today, Leonard Nimoy is laid to rest and as I did the day John Lennon died, I say farewell to another icon of my season of innocence. Farewell, Mr. Spock. Cross over to the “Undiscovered Country” in peace.
Live long and prosper and Shalom-