Eleven weeks after Marg’s death, where do I find myself? Someone asked me that the other day and I replied along the lines of “I think I am just about crawling out of the valley of the shadow”. They looked at me in a strange kind of a way, and that’s ok. It is a difficult situation to describe.
Where do I find myself today? As strange as it may seem, it is also on Castle rock near Dunsborough fishing with a mate and waiting for a shoal of salmon to swim by. The discussion ranged far and wide but the part that impressed me was when we agreed that “When you take a part of the truth, and make it the whole truth, it ceases to be the truth.” I have just googled it and it appears to be unique in a myriad of saying about truth. The closest I found on the net was “Beware of half truths, you may have hold of the wrong half!” Incidentally I find it somewhat disturbing that a search on the net about truth now incorporates advertisements about “five herbs to defeat pain” and “meet that special person”. What a commentary on our way of life! Be all that as it may, the point I seek to make is that, no matter what you perceive the truth to be, there is always more truth to perceive. I have found this to be true as far as Maggie’s death is concerned.
Again and again I find myself coming back to Simone Weil’s definition of prayer as “attention taken to its highest degree”. How “true” that is! To think of prayer as asking a guy in the sky to pull a certain lever is heresy as far as I am concerned. But “to give our attention” to the death of a loved one who has been so much of one’s life is for me the way to go. You might even come upon some wisdom from guys like Bonhoeffer!
The death of Maggie has become an integral part of my life and always will be. It is a art for which I am very thankful
Be that as it may, and thanks to Bonhoeffer and many dear friends, Marg’s death has now become part and parcel of my life – a part for I am very thankful.
So be it! And if it be so, then to “The Spirit of Life” be the glory. It’s probably time to turn the page. And I do so with words that I recently used at the funeral of a friend.
There are two things that we need to remember.
Firstly, that the life of one whom we love is never lost. It lives on in us. Other things fade, but love never does.
And secondly, there is nothing wrong with death. Death is a part of life. Death at eighty four years of age is not a disaster! Everything in creation flourishes within the context of birth, death and new life. It is a part of the evolutionary process of creative love inviting humanity to fullness of life.
All of us, and I mean all of us, need to remember today that life is about love, and love is stronger than death.