The Door of Death
Dear old and new friends,
Good Friday honors the death day of Jesus, and on that day we are forced to ponder what we typically try to deny, our own death. We live but a short span of days, and it is our common belief that the day of our death ends all of them, so no wonder we try to deny its ugly reality. Christians revere the image of the cross, a paradoxical sign of the power of repulsive evil and also the triumph of life over death. Among the countless meanings of the symbol of the cross is the End; so it is used to mark grave sites. Traditionally tomb stones have two dates, the deceased’s birth date and the death date…but something is missing! Following the death date there needs to be those legendary words of the Saturday afternoon matinee movies that ended with the hero or heroine in a hopeless situation: “To be continued!”
This Good Friday consider that Teilhard de Chardin taught the need of new religious symbols, rituals and prayers that embrace our new understanding of the influence of evolution, quantum physics and our place in an ever-expanding cosmos. I propose one new radical change…abandon the cross of Calvary and replace it with Jesus nailed to an old large door! Pause and take a few moments to create in your mind this new image of Cavalry; envision on top of that barren hilltop is a 15-foot-tall, 8-foot-wide, old weathered door to which is nailed the dying Jesus of Nazareth.
A door symbolizes passing from one state to another. Doors open to the mysterious and are an invitation to dare to voyage into the beyond. Death is integral to ongoing evolution and its doorway to new life. Easter celebrates that death releases us from our human limitations to experience the freedom of the unlimited, unrestrained boundless new existence with an entirely innovative relationship to Life and the entire star staggering cosmos. This new Easter existence is beyond the feeble comprehension of our small human minds. Only our imaginations can create a teeny glimmer of the utter magnificence of this new life of living in communion with everyone and everything. Each of us this moment is an unfinished creation awaiting the process of being fully created into our personal Good Friday and Easter.
On our fateful day, like the dying Jesus we will plunge into oneness in the Mystery of Life, God, with all the earth and the cosmos of billions of galaxies. Mark and Matthew in their passions stories relate the last human words of Jesus as he died, “My God, why have you forsaken me?” John has Jesus declare the end of his mission, “It is finished.” Luke has the last words of the dying Jesus, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.”
I propose new final words of the dying Jesus! His last words were the very same as those of Elizabeth Kubler Ross. She was a Swiss-American psychiatrist and famous pioneer in her work on death and dying. When asked where she was going when she died she said, “I’m going out dancing among the galaxies.”