Thursday, February 17, 2005

Disjointed Ramblings

I went to another funeral, yesterday. Heart attack. Two other, non-fatal, heart attacks, were suffered lately by people I know, one just a couple of days ago. No wonder, my recent preoccupation with death.

But life goes on, doesn't it? A good life for us here in North America, mostly, but not so good in many other places around the world. We know what is going on around our globe; the newspapers and magazines and TV news keep us informed, or at least tell us what the producers and talking heads want us to know.

That traditional news media reporting is often biased or skewed is itself old news. What is encouraging to me is that the growth of the internet, and tools like blogging software, make it easy for many viewpoints to be 'heard.' Blogs are individual enterprises, beholden to no-one and scrutinized by only the eventual reader -- no editors' prejudices to satisfy, no worries about offending sponsors. The blogger is king of his or her domain and each blog has its own readership. Some blogs are read only by the writer himself. Others entertain and/or inform thousands.

Here in my own blog, I usually refrain from commenting on specific events. There are so many other bloggers who keep us up-to-date on the latest idiocy perpetrated by governments, corporations or individuals. I am more interested in the overall human condition. Why do we act as we do? Why do we not learn from our mistakes? Why do we hurt each other?

Why do we act as though we will live forever, especially given that the daily news is awash with evidence to the contrary?

We live, we die, we become a memory. Eventually, we are reduced to a name entry on a family tree, known only as the ancestor of our descendants. Most of us will not be remembered twenty or thirty years after we are gone. The empires we spend our lives building will likely have less permanent consequence than the lessons learned from the hugs we give our children.

I have tried to teach my son that it is more important to be respected than to be liked. There are scoundrels everywhere who are liked by all because they are affable, gregarious and funny while also dishonest, dishonourable and undependable. I would rather that I be remembered for integrity -- keeping promises, being fair, reasonable, responsible.

Most of all, I want to be remembered by my son as being accessible and consistent; available for help with any problem and being a dependable constant in a world in which scarcely anything else is dependable or constant.

That's a tall order, isn't it?


  1. I'm sure your son will remember you for being both accessible and consistent, but more than that, he will also remember you for your genuine interest in his thoughts and feelings. Being available when your child wants to talk is truly a generous gift. He is fortunate that you reach out to him like this.

    Your current preoccupation with death is understandable. I'll look forward to a blog where you discuss your perceptions of the existence of life after death. Your blog resonated with me as I am revisiting my thoughts and ideas about death, dying and all of the bewildering theories that go with this powerful stage of our existence.

    Thanks for sharing your ramblings.

  2. I would love to think that there is something wonderful waiting for us after we die. It is, unfortunately, very hard for me to consider that as a possibility anymore. Yes, it would be an interesting subject to ponder at length.