Dillard's Holy the Firm suggests that the coherency of morality and ethics emanating from the divine is not simple. Its complexity is the reason why seemingly senseless destruction can be embraced.
Dillard's mediation offers a nuanced view of the divine world. She feels that since the divine created us, its universal plan might lie outside of our understanding: We did not create this world and do not understand all of its aspects:
We sleep to time's hurdy-gurdy; we wake, if ever we wake, to the silence of God. And then, when we wake to the deep shores of time uncreated, then when the dazzling dark breaks over the far slopes of time, then it's time to toss things, like our reason, and our will; then it's time to break our necks for home.
Reflecting on the "silence of God" enables us to see the world as beyond human comprehension. It spans "to the deep shores of time uncreated."
Violence and destruction have a role in this configuration. Dillard argues for their purpose in a complex design. The moth's dying and Julie's disfigurement are seemingly pointless acts of horrific violence. Yet, Dillard argues that violence and hurt brought on by destruction are essential "materials" that the divine "artist" uses to create our world. Dillard suggests that such realities are not senseless, but real parts of divine creation:
The pain with the millstones' pitiless turning is real, vaulting, insofar as it is love, beyond the plane of the stones' sickening churn and arcing to the realm of spirit bare. And you can get caught holding one end of a love, when your father drops, and your mother; when a land is lost, or a time, and your friend blotted out, gone, your brother's body spoiled, and cold, your infant dead, and you dying: you reel out love's long line alone, stripped like a live wire loosing its sparks to a cloud, like a live wire loosed in space to longing and grief everlasting.
Our response to painful realities defines our place in the world. Dillard argues that solely focusing on these "senseless" acts of destruction causes us to live in pain, "like a wire loosed in space to longing and grief everlasting."
However, Dillard offers another path. When we see hurt as a part of the divine understanding, a connection emerges. Dillard argues that this link is the bedrock of faith: "Faith would be, in short, that God has any willful connection with time whatsoever, and with us. For I know it as given that God is all good. And I take it also as given that whatever he touches has meaning, if only in his mysterious terms, the which I readily grant." The moth that died provided the wick for Dillard to read. She believes that its purpose was essential because "when the candle is out [and] the world is without light," the result is "wasteland and chaos." In this construction, a "life without sacrifice is an abomination." At the same time, she recognizes that the suffering of the little girl compels her to action. She will sacrifice for Julie: "So live. I'll be the nun for you. I am now." In both instances, violence created the opportunity for new links to the divine to emerge.
Dillard argues that in our darkest moments, when we turn towards the divine, our connection increases. We develop greater capacity for loving God and the divine plan, thereby ensuring that we are never alone: "Held, held fast by love in the world like the moth in wax, your life a wick, your head on fire with prayer, held utterly, outside and in, you sleep alone, if you call that alone, you cry God." When we "cry God," Dillard argues that we see the universe in its true form. We view it as something we did not create, but was created for us. Violence is not senseless in this universal understanding. While complicated and intricate, the coherence of morality and ethics in this world remains quite intact.