Wednesday, August 16, 2006

An Analogy

or allegory or whatever.

I have this incredible urge to find out little bits of trivia. Basic curosity type stuff; trying to understand the world type stuff.

Anyway, we were sitting around in the Chaplaincy office one afternoon and were dwelling in the age-old mystery: Is a tomato a fruit or a vegetable? Of course, I could not dwell long in that mystery because of my need to know. So I looked it up. To a biologist a tomato is a fruit -- a berry to be precise. However, the Supreme Court in the late 1800's judged a tomato to be a vegetable. So a tomato is both.

Or is it? Perhaps when speaking to a biologist, I need to understand their label of "berry" or "fruit," but if speaking to a politician or legal counsel, I need to use that label of "vegetable." Our labels are of our own making -- and speak to our own need. Some of us can embrace one label, other another, while some can embrace all labels. Even the word "tomato" is a label -- meaning that squishy red round thing that you grow in your yard and put in spaghetti sauce.

Where do I label things? Can I embrace all labels? When is there need for precise use of labels, will I be able and willing to do that?


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