Concerning a Man, an Angel, and the Grim Reaper  

rm_Vitruvius78 39M
127 posts
8/3/2006 3:36 am

Last Read:
8/10/2006 5:36 am

Concerning a Man, an Angel, and the Grim Reaper

(Like many people I like to post about Sex and tantalizing experiences, but also like many others I like to push the boundry a little more every once in a while. This is a very long post. I suggest copy,paste, and printing it out first.)

I know where the Grim Reaper was at 6 am yesterday morning! He was in the hospital room of a fairly young man, father of three children, loving husband and caring neighbor of mine. He left with that man's soul under His robe leaving behind a scene of wiling people to howl at the early morning moon in lamentation to their misfortune. He left sadness behind and departed without a second glance. He was in and out in no time at all. It was His job, and he'd seen worse I'm sure.

Millions of millions of people have passed over this earth from the dawn of the Homo-Erectus until yesterdays twighlite, and all have asked the same question: What for and where do we go from here?

Everyone says death is eventual. Doctors say its not our fault. Clergymen say its a doorway, to another, or a next life, or a sleep in awaiting for judgement day. Lawyers and morticians say death is a living. Politicians say its a shame, and generals say its an honor. Soldiers say Death is not my enemy, He is my companion walking with me to work. Old men say its closer now than it was yesterday, and little children don't say anything at all.

Life to poets is a dish of pain if its not what they imagine it to be, or a bed of roses if they can pay the tab. To philosophers, Its a matter of inquiry and methodical inspection. To scientists life is a struggle to quantify the qualitative, and qualify the quantitative, and then write down an obscure equation to describe neither. To critics life is misery dressed as a tramp, and virtue dressed as a pimp. To the average man life is something you waste in the beginning, struggle with in the middle, and regret in the end. Old people say life is not what it used to be, and little children don't say anything at all.

Buddha once said “…roads were not made for destinations, but for traveling. And so was life.

Millions of millions of people that have come and gone over this earth from the dawn of man to the twilight of yesterday know one thing for sure: you are here one second gone the next .

Its amazing how many things you can think up about life when you are standing in another man's funeral. When early at dawn you wake up from your sleep to receive the ageless call of assistance, that beacon of humanity passed down over generations from father to son, that silent summoning of the living to see off the dead and contemplate once more their existence in silence and sorrow.

That call for duty has been unchanged in my village for as long as I can remember, although the younger people have developed a way to ignore it somehow. Somehow they developed a method that allows them to shrug off the shrieking wail of a mourning mother, and the silent tears of an old man. There were 6 young people in yesterdays funeral, and none of them knew where they were supposed to be and when, or what they were expected to do when they get there. It was a smile under my skin that was struggling to breakthrough all day yesterday when I would lay eyes on one of those lost and confused souls that were ashamed of their existence in the presence of a corpse. Those who knew that they were supposed to assist the living in accepting the sorrow but failed to find a way. I smiled at one point when one of them stood among the family of the deceased accepting condolences instead of giving them out. I shook my head when I was the shortest pall bearer and when these young men left immediately after the casket was in the catacomb without the customary prayer. I laughed when they did not know the words of the prayer itself. The final prose that kisses the memory of the deceased goodbye. To think that in the not so far future, before my eyes are closed on this world people will be looking for a man that knows the words to that prayer like a needle in a haystack.

I stood an extra second on the foot of that mausoleum thinking of all the wasted bodies it has devoured for so long. Imagining the scores of people that have marched those steps, once a pall bearer then borne themselves. I looked at the orchids and vines that grew in that silent place. At the candles that had been lit over the ages and the cold blocks of stone that have seen the light of day and the dark of night for so much longer time than I have. A feeling of peace fell over me like a heavy blanket and I knew that the time to leave for home had come eventually.

In the community hall of my village, overlooking the cemetery, people gather for this final reception, this final wedding march in black. The more tempered of the people have learned to deal with sorrow rationally as long as its not a relative of theirs that is being mourned. Otherwise, all bets are off and those same rational minds slip into the ecstasy of sadness and tear dance helplessly.

The feeling engulfs even the unrelated visitors that venture too far into the heart of the funeral, into the center ring, close to the spotlight, where grief is direct through the fixed eyes of a hundred women dressed in black at a cold body spread on white like a hundred arrows meant for the kill. When you get too close to the reality of that congregation, to the basic reason of why you were awaken at the early hours of morning, it dawns on you that that is the mark of Death. His signature. His final touch to the reality of the human condition. Its the end of Life. That which you had either taken so lightly, or contemplated so deeply. Its the end of your journey with sorrow, that had begun with your birth in rejoice. Its the final picture at the end of that photo-album your parents had started the day you were born. And what a happy day that was.

The day you were carried into this world from your heels. The day you were washed for the first time. The day you drew your first breath and gave wings to your first cries. The day you lost your wings and found yourself helpless on a bosom that received you gently, and nurtured you from there on. The day all the sounds made no sense and you could not shut them out, like so many other sounds you will not be able to quiet throughout your life. The rhythmic beat of your heart in your ears, the steady whoosh of your breath, and that high pitch ringing in your head you hear as you put your head to sleep.

Remember that journey?

An old song in my country says:

"Oh you who walks this timeworn Earth,
"Don't march with grandiose and pound your feet,
"Remember ... remember
"You're only passing Her on a visit."

But it never said where we were visiting from or going to.

The only thing you remember are the tears and smiles that glue themselves to your memories. The first of everything. Life seems at some points like an open buffet of endless dishes that you cannot hope to taste all. Some make you smile, some make you frown. Some make you laugh, and some make you cry. Some make you stop and consider for a while, others you just pass by like the steamed vegetables on the side of your plate. Life seems to be full of many dishes that taste like chicken, and many others that have no taste at all. But that’s as far as the analogy goes.

You spend the first part of your days on earth wishing you were older and somewhere else. Eventually you are older and have been everywhere you can possibly be, and still life feels incomplete. You start your life waiting for that first kiss and when it passes you by you find out that you forgot its taste. You embark on a journey and that’s when you begin to feel philosophical.

You decide that there should be a meaning to this life for it to exist in the first place. You look around you and clap your hands firmly together and say "Alright. Where shall I start."

To an infant, the world was his bed, and then he becomes a toddler. To a toddler the world is the many rooms they are placed in and try to explore, and then they become children. Children discover the back yard and millions of squares of sky and clouds that they fail to understand, before they become students.

As a student you eventually either go to school, or educate yourself in any means available. You figure out that a skill of some sort is essential to put you into place and sustain you. For that reason you begin to gather the harvest that someone else had planted before you. You look at arithmetic, theology, physics, sociology, chemistry, biology, history and geography. You figure out how big the world is and its a shock to you at that point. The world is more than the map of the globe they taught you about. Its a pulsing planet of many humans that have functioned or malfunctioned as a race throughout the history you discovered. And you finally are awarded the tools of the trade by the formative years of your existence. The primal questions. "Why, How, Where, What, When, and the most powerful ramification of inquiries: The "If".

What If.

You realize that there is another world hiding under the skin of the one you see with your eyes. A darker yet colorful world. A world that is warm to the touch instead of cold. A world that is deafening instead of silent. A world that is dynamic instead of static. And that is when you notice that you have become a Man.

As a Man you look back at what you have accomplished and seek out your roots. You look for the group that you belong to or the subset that includes your characteristics. You try to quantify and qualify in hopes that you will reach an answer to any one of the amounting questions. You work, you bleed, you push and you pull. Your life becomes simply complicated. Full of so many things and empty of something you can't quite place your finger on.

But Life in itself must have changed so little in your lifetime. Life with a capital L does not adhere to the insignificant changes you had to go through. It’s your view of Life that has been ramified. Upgraded. Improved. Revised and edited until it lost all meaning whatsoever, and then you say Life is meaningless.

You discover the Anthropic principle which simply says that things are the way they are because we are already here to observe them. If Life was not the way it is we would not be here in the first place and thus our existence is the precondition of Life. It holds as much meaning as we crave it to have and not more. We are the main reason why life is unexplainable to us since we cannot be both the observer and the observed simultaneously.

When did it become more complicated than a coin for ice cream at the corner shop?

How did we become bigger only to get smaller and fall into our places in the scheme of things like small pulleys and wheels in a large machine?

The gravity of the situation gets to you eventually and you abandon the questions with a shrug. You blame it all on the others and the way they see things in an unclear way. You claim its meaningless just to shut the voices in your head, and call yourself an existentialist only because the name entails the term existence in it which is something that you are striving so hard to do those days.

You fail to understand and strive to exist.

You spend sometime wandering the land with the skills of the trade you have gathered along the path of your journey and the days blend into months, the months blend into years, and eventually years. You lament your condition and decide that there must be a way to understand this world.

"I WILL understand Life" you cry at the top of your lungs and walk towards the sea like so many people before you have in times of confusion. You seek the vast blue in hopes of finding the clear white, and on the beach you find an angle. Now I know you don't believe in angels but bare with me.

On the beach you see an angel digging a grave. It kneels on its knees and tears at the sand with its long white fingers. On its face is a vicious smile and its mouth is twisted with the mad sneer of determination. Its white tendrils float upwards in a fiesta of light as the setting sun dies on the horizon, You dread stepping up to that creature but you must have your say. You must understand its purpose and why is it knee deep in sand already? After all, you ARE Man.

As you draw closer it stops digging and straightens up. It climbs out of the grave it has dug and walks to the lapping waves on the shore where it scoops a hand full of water and walks back to the grave. With its hands outstretched it releases the water and a smile of ecstasy spreads its red lips. As it turns its back on you, you finally find your voice.

"Please..." you say and the words lose their way to your throat.
But the angel had heard you for it turns on its heels without a muscle's twitch to face you. Its lips smile at you and they mouth "Yes?"

A sound like music fills your head but you assure yourself that the word had not passed the seraphim’s lips. You gather your courage and spill your mind's worth. "What is it that you are doing?"

The angel smiles back at you. "Why I am burying the sea of course." It says matter-of-factly and begins to turn its back once more.

"But that is absurd!"

"And why is that?" It asks you with inquiring eyes.

"Because that grave will be full before you gather enough of the sea to bury it in. And it will be empty again come dawn"

"That is a smart answer for a man who has so boldly declared that he will bury the meaning of Life in that little head of his."

And with those words the angel disappears like it is the habit of angels to do so at the end of such episodes, and you are left with that dilemma howling in your brain.

"How will all this end?" you ask as you feel the tap on your shoulder, and you look back to find that its 6 am and you know where the Grim Reaper is at that particular moment.


ShyWhisper2006 54F
15175 posts
8/3/2006 4:28 am

Wow....I am truly speechless...What an interesting post and one that not only explains to me but also asks of me...One that makes you think and yet shows you a lIfe truth...thank you V...for sharing this with me.. *smiles*

papyrina 52F
21133 posts
8/3/2006 5:12 am

Another wonderful thought provoking post,thankyou for sharing

And my sympathies on your lost friends

I'm a

i'm here to stay

Sailor376 64M
2288 posts
8/3/2006 4:35 pm

To my new found friend V,

I have lost my close friends Ara and Bill and have had to look in to see what is there and what is not. I am lonelier for their not now being. And I have tasted of what I may deem important to me or in me. I have wanted to sail the oceans in my small boat, I still hope to. I have words and ideas that have tapped me on the shoulder, I should not harbor them, I should speak them into the ears that can make them work.

As to where we have come from or where we are to go. I know so little.

I remember being born. Truth. I remember just a few tiny snippets before I was born. I cannot know your mind or any persons mind. I cannot say that I am more afraid or less afraid than someone else. I cannot say with certainty anything. But because I remember the beginning I hope that I may embrace the ending with grace and open mind and eyes, hoping to see where I am going.


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