In Michael Ondaatje’s newest book The Cat’s Table he tells the story of a boat journey taken by three young boys from Sri Lanka to London. At dinner the boys along with other passengers sit at the “cats table.” The table that is farthest away from the Captain’s table which is the most prestigious place to sit during dinner.
Do you ever feel like you are sitting at the “cat’s table” in life, furthest away from where the action is. Do you feel that if you only had more authority or prestige people would pay attention or act on your desire to help the world. Read what the author says:
“What is interesting and important happens mostly in secret, in places where there is no power. Nothing much of lasting value ever happens at the head table, held together by familiar rhetoric. Those who already have power continue to glide along the familiar rut they have made for themselves…. It would always be strangers like them, at the various Cat’s tables of my life, who would alter me.”
Who has altered your life? Who sits at your cat’s table? Isn’t this similar to Christ’s sermon on the mount? “The meek will inherit the earth, etc.” Many read the beatitudes as what will happen in the afterlife. Perhaps, Christ was saying that his message is for the now.
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