The recent untimely death of my daughter has reminded me of the fragility of our lives and the need to do or say important things now, before we are unable to do or say anything. I have decided therefore to use this blog to mention some things that we all know to be true. When I say, we all know, I am including those who know but refuse to admit that they know. The Christian aspect of this is the promise of Jesus to send an advocate to his followers, called the Spirit of Truth.
We all know that with the possible exception of viruses, the human being is the most dangerous and destructive creature on the planet. We know this, yet we are only beginning to take it seriously. Why? Until recently we were not conscious that this truth means we are destroying our own habitat, involving the death of most or perhaps all of us. Before, it was only a matter of polluted rivers, oceans and landscapes, and the death or mutilation of our fellow creatures, including our fellow human beings. Most of us could put up with that. And even now, few of us are worried enough to do anything much about the destruction of our planet, and there are many who prefer their killing habit to their own survival.
We all know this. But we tend to view the actions of Extinction Rebellion as a bit over the top, meaning we should all go towards death politely. Jesus was savage; he didn’t think that people who were only concerned with the day to day needs of family and work could do a job for him; and so he demanded some separation from family life as the condition of being a disciple. He recognised that ordinary routines would triumph, unless they were opposed. Comfortable Christians don’t like being reminded of the savagery of Jesus which takes account of what we all know.
What we all know could be called the sinfulness of humanity, which is not the moral failings usually identified by churches, but rather enslavement to the powers of death, lack of commitment to life. We all know this but we would rather not talk about it, because it’s not cheerful, optimistic or genial. If God made us, it’s possible he knew from the start we were a busted flush, doomed in spite of his and some humans’ best efforts, to join the dodo and the fresh water dolphin in oblivion. But it’s also possible that he knew that we could be roused to act on what we all know, by daft, savage, outrageous lovers of life, and by quiet humorous reasonable lovers of life, who want their grandchildren to live.
Once the virus is under control, we all know that we need to get moving, fast.