Nov 24, 2010

Where, o death? Pike River

So it turns out the the miners trapped at the Pike River Coal Mine have died, perhaps en masse - in the recent second explosion if they weren't already killed in the first.

Thousands of people around New Zealand prayed that they might be discovered alive; from the prime minister downwards - but it looks like this hope won't be fulfilled for any of the remaining miners. Were these prayers pointless? Is it time to shrug in confusion and continue life as usual, or reassess how we're going about it all? "If the dead are not raised, let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die"?

Is prayer just a futile attempted exercise in wish fulfillment? Is it necessarily silly? Is the universe ultimately a giant fluke of many atoms, bizarrely ordered; and occasionally heart-wrenchingly disordered, with no-one pulling any strings - or somewhere out there is there someone who cares? Where's the evidence? What kind of evidence do we want?

Why do people die? Why do many die 'before their time'? What is a life well lived and what is robbed from those who die early; and if there is any such thing, by whom is it stolen? If life is not perfect, or if we are not, what is the cause? Where do the ideals we have come from and do they hold any real value?

Death comes for all of us. Some of us are killed by carbon monoxide poisoning, others by an explosion, others by cancer, car crashes, drowning, heart attack, murder or chilling accident. Life matters. I hold too, that the ending of a life is truly significant. It's not just a subtle shift in the configuration of a particular collocation of atoms. But why might I think this?

I commend to your attention and study 1 Cor: 15, particularly from verse 12 onwards. I like the option this site gives you to 'listen' to the scriptures; why not check it out?

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